General Green Card

Status, authorized period of stay and unlawful presence

Status, authorized period of stay and unlawful presence are three VERY important concepts in US immigration laws with far reaching implications. The nuances in these concepts are so intricate that they can trip up even my fellow-lawyers. I see issues in this all the time.

Here is a brief primier to enable you to understand the basics. This is by no means an exhaustive analysis.

Status

I-485 interview-- does arrest create a problem

Quote: I just got a letter from USCIS that I need to appear for a I-485 interview. I had applied my green card under the EB-XX. To update you i had an arrest record in 2005 for a domestic violence battery case, which was later dismissed in court. Also you might be aware my wife is currently in india, and we are under separation. She will join me on (XXX date) if she agrees for marriage counseling. Under these circumstances I had some questions which I wanted answers for: Please let me know your response.
 

USCIS Revises Direct Mail Program for the Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card (Form I-90)

U.S. Citizenship and Immigrations Services (USCIS) published a Federal Register notice on April 28, 2009 that changed the filing location and filing instructions for the Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card (Form I-90). The revised filing instructions require applicants to submit supporting documentation with their applications. Prior to this change, applicants were instructed to bring their supporting documentation to their biometrics appointments. The notice also revises the Direct Mail address for the Form I-90.

H-1 Extension based upon spouse's 140; Child born in USA

Quote: 1. Hello Rajiv, my wife and I have been working on H1B for different employers. My employer applied for my GC in 07. I have my I-140 approved, my wife and I have our EAD cards and AP. Thanks to your team! Now my wife's H1B term (6 years) ends on Jan 2010. Does this mean that if she wishes to continue her employment with the same employer after Jan 2010, she "HAS" to use her EAD ?

Ans. Yes. Under the current USCIS policy, they will not extend her H-1, based upon your I-140. They used to do that a few years ago, but not any more, as far as I know.
 

Watch out - the prioirty date cut off in March was effective immediately

The April 2009 Visa Bulletin was issued on March 9th. The VB said the visa numbers for EB3 were unavailable with immediate effect (Philippines retrogressed to 2003).

This is highly unusual. The visa bulletin is a forecast for the month ahead and does not take effect immediately. But State Department says that this one was of immediate effect.

What does this mean?

Criteria for Outstanding Researcher/Professor Category

Preliminary requirement: The applicants must be able to document at least three years of experience in teaching and/or research in the specified academic field and that they are "recognized internationally."

Generally speaking, experience in teaching or research while working on an advanced degree will not satisfy the three year requirement.

EB-3 "Unavailable"

Question details

Here is a question this morning from forclients.com, our clients' extranet.

Quote:
The nightmare has once again come true, eb3 would be unavailable until September 09, if I am not wrong?

With this in the background, I am thinking of giving up the hope of getting my green card soon (my pd may 04). If I go back to India, can my GC application still continue to be processed?

Correct. "Unavailable" means that it is the ESTIMATE of the State Department that visa numbers for India are exhausted for this fiscal year which ends on September 30. But the estimate may not always be accurate. DOS may go back and reopen this category if they need to (unlikely, but not impossible). Your green card can go on in your absence. That is no problem as long as we have answers to these questions: 1. Is the job really permanent? 2. Why is the employer accommodating you? 3. Who is performing the job in your absence?