What documents required for RPI status application?

Under the Obama Immigration Reform Bill, undocumented aliens will be adjust to the Registered Provisional Immigrant (RPI) status starting within the next 1-2 years.  Obviously, till USCIS publishes the complete application process details (as outlined in the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act of 2013), along with forms and evidence required, it is too early to predict what proof will be needed for the petition, but based on how the process works for hundreds of other such visas issued by the United States Government, here is a list of docs that you may start to prepare in the coming months, so that when the time comes, all you need to do is to complete the application:

  1. Passport from your native country.  It should be valid at the time of applying.  If you do not have one currently you should apply for one right away.
  2. Birth certificate.  If it not in English, it would need to be translated into English, since all the paperwork will be accepted only in English.
  3. If you entered the United States legally, that is, you entered after inspection at an airport or border checkpoint, the passport that you used to enter.  It will be great if you also have the I-94 form that you completed.
  4. If you came to the United States illegally, meaning entry without inspection (EWI), you will need solid documentation that you came prior to December 31, 2011.  It can be in form of school/work records, immunization record, etc.
  5. Proof of continuous presence.  It can be documents related to school/college/work/bank/leases, etc. that demonstrate that you did not leave the country and have lived here since.
  6. If you got into trouble with the law, paperwork related to the court case.  The more documentation that you have the better it is going to be because then the USCIS can decide your case easily rather than wait for documents to come in from other government agencies or issue an RFE to you.  So, if you lost the paperwork, start making the rounds of the courts in which you were charged to get copies of the documents.  DO NOT even think of hiding a criminal past assuming that the USCIS will not be able to find it or it was too minor.  Even if you used a fake name to commit a crime, you maybe found out, so consult an attorney.
  7. Proof of filing taxes whether done with an ITIN or a fake Social Security number, as long as the tax documents have your real name.
  8. Proof of all the jobs that you have had and the amount of money that you have made in each one of them (W-2 forms).  Apparently, working illegally is not considered a crime in Comprehensive Immigration Reform, and therefore, it is best to come clean, even if you were paid in cash under the table.
  9. Start saving money right now.  There is going to be $500 penalty fee and it is estimated the cost of the application will be somewhere between $500 and $1000 per person.  While there will be discounts for multiple members of a family and no penalty for minors and DREAMers, you should save the money for all adult applicants.  In addition, if you have not filed taxes, you will also need to pay whatever taxes you owe.

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