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Emancipation and Ages for Moving Out

How do you become legal?


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September 13, 2016 2:18PM

By turning 18.

if your under 18, but at least 16years old, you can apply for "emancipation." But that's a long legal road.


If you are referring to becoming a legal immigrant, you have to apply for a "green card" and then abide by the conditions of that green card.

Alternatively, you can apply for asylum if you can show that:

  • you have reasonable fears of persecution or death in your home country.
  • that you would be persecuted on account of one of five protected grounds: race, religion, nationality, political opinion and/or social group.
  • that the government is either involved in the persecution, or unable to control the conduct of private actors.

Also, a member of congress can submit a "private bill" to grant you - by name - legal residency

Some long-time residents (more than 10 years) with a record of good moral character and no convictions for other crimes (entering or staying in the US illegally IS a CRIME) and who can show removal would result in exceptional and extremely unusual hardship to his or her U.S. citizen or permanent resident spouse, children, or parent can get legal permanent residence.

Foreign nationals who get married to a US citizen can also apply for permanent residence - but they may have to provide additional evidence that they weren't just married for the green card.