Our office was contacted last year by a young Bosnian American from south St. Louis county whose mother-in-law had come to the United States in 2007 on a B1/B2 visitor visa. The visitor visa had expired long ago and the fact that the elderly lady was living in the United States for three years out of status had caused the family a significant amount of stress. The family had tried to file an immediate family visa application on their own, but had experienced difficulty in completing all of the forms correctly and gathering the necessary documents. The lady's lawful permanent resident (green card) application was therefore denied.
We met with the family and advised them that because the woman's son was a U.S. citizen and was over the age of 21, she was eligible for an immediate visa based on her family status. The fact that she was the mother of a U.S. citizen would also allow USCIS to "forgive" the fact that she had been in the U.S. out of status.
Happy to report that we went to the USCIS office in downtown St. Louis today for our client's interview. Her application for lawful permanent resident status was approved and the immigration officer informed us that our client would receive her green card in the mail in a few weeks.