We represent clients from all 50 states and can meet by phone, WhatsApp, or ZOOM video conference. Click here to contact us (bilingual)

What is the Special Immigrant Juvenile (SIJ) Classification?

Special immigrant juvenile (SIJ) classification is a special immigrant classification that is sometimes granted to non-citizens residing in the United States who require the protection of a juvenile court due to abuse, abandonment or neglect by their parent(s). The granting of SIJ status may qualify the non-citizen to become a lawful permanent resident and is one of the most common pathways to getting a Green Card for immigrant youth.

Who Qualifies?

Although the process of filing for SIJ status is complex, our seasoned immigration law experts at Familia America Immigration can help. We have helped thousands of non-citizens on their path to citizenship, and we pride ourselves in honest, compassionate legal representation for all of our clients.

In order to qualify for SIJ classification, US Citizenship and Immigration Services says that the applicant must meet all of the following statutory requirements:

  • Be under the age of 21 when filing Form I-360, the petition for SIJ status.
  • Be living in the US at the time of application, including when filing the application and when USCIS decides on whether to grant SIJ status.
  • Be unmarried at the time of the petition being filed and when a decision on SIJ status is determined; applicants may have also been previously married, provided the marriage ended in divorce, death or annulment.
  • Possess a valid court order from a juvenile court in the US that finds that the petitioner is dependent on the court or is a ward of a state department or agency and have not been reunified with a parent due to abuse, abandonment or neglect. The petitioner must have the order in place at the time of the petition filing and when a decision is reached. An exception to this is in the event that the court’s jurisdiction expired due to the applicant’s placement or adoption with a permanent guardian or if the applicant aged out of the court’s jurisdiction.
  • Have sought relief from abuse, neglect or abandonment under state law, not just to obtain an easier route to citizenship.

What To Do Next

Immigration law is nothing if not complex. Understanding the nuances of US immigration law is difficult, especially for non-citizens who may not speak English. SIJ is a valid option for much immigrant youth, but it is not the only option. It is not unusual for immigrant children to qualify for relief under the Violence Against Women Act or in the form of a “U Visa,” which is available to children who are victims of specific crimes. Children who fear to return to their home countries may also qualify for asylum.

Fortunately, our green card lawyer in Salt Lake City, Utah provide invaluable advice and representation to our clients with the goal of helping them achieve their goal of becoming legal residents in this great country. No matter your immigration issue, the team at Familia America Immigration wants to be there for you. Give us a call at 801-656-9605 or click here for help with your immigration woes.

The post What is the Special Immigrant Juvenile (SIJ) Classification? appeared first on Immigration Attorney Salt Lake City | Familia America.

Contact a Salt Lake City Fiancé Visa Attorney at Familia America Today

Attorney Gloria Cardenas brings more than 30 years of experience in immigration law to help protect the rights of clients and their family members. She and her knowledgeable team at Familia America work diligently behind the scenes to help process fiancé visa applications as quickly as possible. To learn more, contact the legal professionals at Familia America in Salt Lake City and schedule a consultation to discuss your case.

Contact Form
Two Young Lady Having Conversation in the Office

Follow Us On TikTok!

 Podcast Features

Featured YouTube Videos