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Question #1 – Visa Bulletin
Where can I find the visa bulletin numbers?
Answer #1 – On the U.S. Department of State website: Visa Bulletin
Question #2 – Criminal Convictions
Will a criminal conviction impair my ability to receive a temporary visa?
Answer #1 – It depends upon the type of criminal conviction. Depending upon the seriousness of the criminal conviction, it is possible to be inadmissible and/or deportable for certain criminal convictions – crimes of moral turpitude, crimes involving domestic violence. You should speak with an Immigration Attorney to further discuss your situation.
Question #3 – Immigration Petition for Alien Relative
As a U.S. citizen, for whom can I file an I-130 Form?
Answer #3 – As a USC, you may sponsor (file an I-130, Immigration Petition for Alien Relative) petition on behalf of your Immediate Relatives – Parents, Spouse, and Children who are under 21 and unmarried. Visas are always available for Immediate Relatives of USCs.
You may sponsor other family members who are not immediate relatives; however, the preference categories apply and you may experience significant delays in the sponsorship of those relatives depending upon their country of chargeability and relationship to you.
• First preference: Unmarried, adult sons and daughters of U.S. citizens (adult means 21 or older.)
• Third Preference: Married sons and daughters (any age) of U.S. citizens • Fourth Preference: Brothers and sisters of adult U.S. citizens
Question #4 – Green Card
Does Green Card processing duration depends on the country of birth or country of nationality?
Answer #4 – Chargeability is usually determined by country of birth. Exceptions are made to prevent the separation of family members when the limitation for the country of birth has been met.
Question #5 – Employment Authorization (EAD)
I filed for my EAD renewal back in May and it is still pending. My current EAD expires next week. What are my options?
Answer #5 – Stop working once your current EAD expires and wait for the delivery of your new EAD. Or, if you are eligible/qualify, you may submit an expedite request to the USCIS through an INFOPASS Appointment at a local office.
USCIS Expedite Criteria:
• Severe financial loss to company or individual • Extreme emergent situation • Humanitarian situation • Nonprofit status of requesting organization in furtherance of the cultural and social interests of the United States • Department of Defense or National Interest Situation (Note: Request must come from official United States Government entity and state that delay will be detrimental to our Government)
• USCIS error • Compelling interest of USCIS
Question #6 – Green Card
If my wife just received her EAD, can she apply for a Social Security Number or does she have to wait until her Green Card is approved?
Answer #6 – Once you are officially authorized to work in the United States (issuance of an Employment Authorization Document) you may apply for a Social Security Number.
Question #7 – Affidavit of Support
What is an Affidavit of Support?
Answer #7 – USCIS: An affidavit of support is a document an individual signs to accept financial responsibility for another person, usually a relative, who is coming to the United States to live permanently.
Question #8 – General
How long can you lawfully stay in the United States before returning home after a visa expires?
Answer #8 – There is no safeguard/grace period written in the regulations; however, everyone should be aware of the 3 year/10 year bars. Persons who have accumulated 180 days or more of unlawful presence after April 1, 1997, and have then left the country, cannot return to the U.S. for 3 years. Persons who have accumulated one year or more of unlawful presence after April 1, 1997, and have then left the country, cannot return to the U.S. for 10 years.
Question #9 – H1B Nonimmigrant Work Visa
Is there a grace period for applying for an H-1B transfer after termination from a previous sponsoring employer?
Answer #9 – According to the USCIS, there is no grace period. In practice, a period of two weeks is a reasonable period of time in order to transition to new employment; however, the regulations do not provide for a grace period.
Question #10 – General
My name was spelled incorrectly on my I-797 receipt notice for my I-129. Can I have it corrected and will it affect the approval process?
Answer #10 – Contact the USCIS at 1-800-375-5283 and initiate a Service Request to correct the typographical error, so that the approval notice is accurate.
MVP Law Group would like to thank everyone who contributed a question or comment.
Our next “Immigration Q & A Forum” is scheduled for Friday, July 27, 2018!
Please remember to submit your questions/comments on our H1B Visa Lawyer blog!