The USCIS Adjudicators Field Manual that incorporates a recent policy memorandum, and appears to be the most comprehensive guidance on the topic, provides guidance to Immigration Officers adjudicating applications to adjust status in the U.S. The memo also appears to say that by taking the designated action (such as paying the fee bill or filing forms DS 230 or DS 260) within the requisite time period freezes the child’s age, even though the visa number isn’t current or available. The State Department’s Foreign Affairs Manual (FAM) which is guidance to consular officers, appears to say no, a visa number must be available to freeze the age, whereas the Department of State’s White Paper says yes, it does freeze the child’s age. There are also rumors the FAM will be revised to say yes, taking the requisite action will freeze the child’s age even though a visa is not available at that time.
- If the NVC Fee Bill has been issued pay it. If the NVC fee bill erroneously left out the child derivative, as many of them have recently, one can consider paying via cashier’s checks as explained on the State Department’s website. If the fee bill has been issued, one can also file forms DS 260 but it is not necessary to file the forms to freeze the child’s age.
- If no fee bill has been issued by NVC, then consider filing the old form DS 230 with the NVC.
- Finally, while there is a $405 filing fee, consider filing form I-824 with the USCIS.
- If the principal applicant is in the U.S. in valid status, together with the beneficiary, and is eligible to adjust status, the best option is usually to file an I-485 adjustment of status application.