In recent years, there have been several amnesty provisions allowing aliens who are in the United States illegally to apply for lawful permanent status.
If you’re a lawful, temporary resident under either the amnesty legalization program or the Special Agricultural Workers Program, you may be eligible to apply for lawful, permanent status.
Under the Special Agricultural Workers Program, you may become a permanent resident if your temporary residence card has the number “2-10” on it. Your status will automatically be changed to that of permanent resident, unless you’re found guilty of fraud or commit disqualifying crimes. These crimes may include the conviction of any felony or three misdemeanors in the United States.
Remember that you must file an I-90 application with the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) to receive your green card. If you become a temporary resident through amnesty because you entered the U.S. illegally before January 1, 1982, and your temporary residence card contains “2-45-A”on the front, you may also be able to change to permanent resident status.
There’s a deadline for filing your application for permanent status. This period begins the nineteenth month after the date you’re granted temporary resident status. This means that one year and seven months after you’ve been granted temporary residence, you may apply for permanent status. Failure to file within this period will mean you lose the right to apply, and will become subject to deportation proceedings.