Tips for minor children on K visa filing for permanent resident status.


A “unmarried person under twenty-one years of age” is defined as “child” according to the Section 101(b)(1) of the Immigration and Nationality. As the minor child of a K-1 a K-2 can seek adjustment of status generally. Then the K-2 can only adjust status prior to his or her 21st birthday if the K-2 adjusts status based on the K-1’s adjustment. K-2s ability to seek adjustment beyond the age of 21 may have changed due to several recent developments.

You may be covered under the Child Status Protection Act of 2002 (CSPA), as explained below, if you should attain the age of 21 years while your Form I-485 is pending,

Details for K-2/K-4 Adjustment of Status as the Step-Child of U.S. Citizen

To permit an applicant for certain immigration benefits to retain the classification as a “child” under Section 101(b)(1) of the INA even if he or she reaches the age of 21, in 2002, Congress passed the Child Status Protection Act of 2002.

CSPA and K-2 applicants

A visa petition Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative is not filed for an individual in K-2 status by the U.S. citizen petitioner. For CSPA provisions to be applicable this is mandatory. Hence, when seeking to adjust status a K-2 non-immigrant cannot utilize the CSPA.  A K-2, absent any different circumstance, may only seek adjustment until he or she reaches his 21st birthday and must adjust prior to his/her 21st birthday.

Based on a parent-child relationship between the petitioner and the K-2 non-immigrant, although not required, USCIS may accept a Form I-130 filed by the U.S. citizen petitioner. For instance when the U.S. citizen petitioner has married the K-1 and the K-2 was not yet 18 years old at that time. The K-2 is considered in this case the step-child of the U.S. citizen under the law. Allowing him or her to utilize the CSPA when seeking adjustment of status this will allow an individual who once was a K-2 to adjust on the basis of being an immediate relative of a U.S. citizen. So that he/she will not age out while Form I-485 is pending.

Requirement for Exercising CSPA:

  • Between the U.S. citizen petitioner and the K-2 non-immigrant parent-child relationship exists
  • Prior to the K-2’s 21st birthday Form I-130 is filed
  • Submitting all required documentation and paying the required fees associated with Forms I-130 and I-485

CSPA and K-4 applicants

A K-4 non-immigrant seeks to adjust as an immediate relative of a U.S. citizen on the basis of a Form I-130 filed by his or her U.S. citizen step parent. So an individual in K-4 status may utilize the provisions of CSPA upon seeking adjustment of status.

If a parent-child relationship between the U.S. citizen and the K-4 non-immigrant exists and the marriage between the U.S. citizen and the K-4’s parent occurred before the child’s 18th birthday only this petition can be filed. A K-4 benefits from the CSPA as long as the Form I-130 petition is filed before the K-4’s 21st birthday as the K-4 child’s age “freezes” on the date the Form I-130 is filed.

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