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Green Card for an Iraqi Who Assisted the U.S. Government

The National Defense Authorization Act authorizes special immigrant status for Iraqi nationals who were employed by or on behalf of the U.S. government in Iraq on or after March 20, 2003, for a period of not less than one year. There are numerical limits on how many Iraqi nationals may receive special immigrant status. For more information, see the USCIS Policy Manual guidance on adjustment of status for certain Afghan and Iraqi nationals.

Refer to Section 1244 of Public Law 110-181, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2008, as amended by Public Law 110-242 for the complete law.

For more information on this program see USCIS Policy Memo on Special Immigrant Visas under section 1244 for Iraqis who assisted the United States Government.

Application Process

To obtain a Green Card as an Iraqi who assisted the U.S. government, whether you live inside or outside the United States, you must first file Form I-360, Petition for Amerasian, Widow(er), or Special Immigrant. For more information on filing Form I-360 as an Iraqi who assisted the U.S. government, see the Form I-360 webpage.

If You Live Outside the United States

If we approved your Form I-360, we will forward the approved petition to the Department of State for consular processing of your special immigrant visa. For more information on getting a special immigrant visa overseas, see the Consular Processing webpage.

If You Live Inside the United States

If we approved your Form I-360 and you did not enter the United States on a special immigrant visa, you must file Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, to obtain a Green Card through adjustment of status.

Eligibility Criteria for Adjustment of Status

You may be eligible for adjustment of status if:

  • You were admitted as a nonimmigrant into the United States
  • You have an approved Form I-360 under section 1244 (as an Iraqi who assisted the U.S. government); and
  • A visa is immediately available for you at the time you file Form I-485

Note: If you entered the United States as a refugee, you cannot adjust status as an Iraqi who assisted the U.S. government; you must apply as a refugee. For more information on obtaining a Green Card through refugee status, see the Green Card for Refugees webpage.

Supporting Evidence for Form I-485
You should submit all of the following evidence with Form I-485:

  • Two passport-style photos;
  • A copy of your government-issued identity document with photograph;
  • A copy of your birth certificate;
  • A copy of your passport page with nonimmigrant visa (if applicable);
  • A copy of your passport page with admission or parole stamp (issued by a U.S. immigration officer) (if applicable);
  • A copy of your Form I-94, Arrival/Departure Record, or copy of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) admission or parole stamp on your Travel Document (if applicable). If CBP gave you an electronic Form I-94 upon your arrival/admission to the United States, you may print a paper version of your Form I-94 from the CBP website;
  • Form I-693, Report of Medical Examination and Vaccination Record (you may submit this together with your Form I-485 or later, such as by mail when we request it or in person at your interview, if any);
  • A copy of the approval notice for Form I-360 (Form I-797, Notice of Action); and
  • Certified police and court records of criminal charges, arrests, or convictions (if applicable).

Employment and Travel Authorization

Generally, when you have a pending Form I-485, you may apply for employment authorization by filing Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization.

You may also apply for an advance parole document by filing Form I-131, Application for Travel Document. An advance parole document authorizes you to appear at a port of entry to seek parole into the United States after temporary travel abroad. If you need to leave the United State temporarily while your Form I-485 is pending, please see the Instructions for Application for Travel Document for more information. Generally, if you have a pending Form I-485 and you leave the United States without an advance parole document, we will consider you to have abandoned your application.

For more information, see our Work Authorization and Travel Documents pages.


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