Q&A’s published on Lawyers.com and the Epoch Times – 12/22/2017 1. Does My Girlfriend Stay Here In States Considered Legal? 2. What Do I Do If I Had to Leave Soon?

1. Does My Girlfriend Stay Here In States Considered Legal?

Change of status from J-1 to F-1 Visa. J-1 expired Dec. 15 2016, F-1 application was received by USCIS Jan. 02 2017. On October 26, 2017 my girlfriend checked her case status and found out that the application was denied. She was supposed to receive a denial notice but since she didn’t update her address after she moved, document wasn’t received. On November 25, on her case status was stated that documents were returned back by post office to USCIS. She did right away updated her address and requested to resend documents, it said expect response by December 4th. Until now she is still waiting for their response or for the document to be resent. 
1. Does her stay here in states considered legal still? 
2. If you get denial notice, how many days they allowed you to depart the country? 
3. What are probable reasons why her application got denied? 

Mr. Lee answers:
If your girlfriend’s case was denied, she would not be considered legal since she has no other nonimmigrant legal status in the US. She should do what she is doing at this time, which is to try to obtain a copy of the decision. It is only at that time that she would have an idea as to the reason for the denial and whether she could contest it through a motion to reopen or reconsider. Although there are technically 30 days to file a motion after denial, U.S.C.I.S. would likely entertain a late motion where your girlfriend never received the decision previously and made reasonably diligent efforts to obtain the denial after learning that her application was denied. I do note that persons who have changes of status denied and who have no other legal status can incur a three-year bar upon return if they remain in the US for 180 days or more after the date of the denial. Success on a motion to reopen or reconsider would retroactively make all of the time legal since the time of the denial. A difficulty may be that a decision might not be forthcoming within 180 days on a motion, and your girlfriend may have to make a decision as to whether to stay in the US to continue the motion or leave the country to avoid the three-year bar.

2. What Do I Do If I Had to Leave Soon?

Printing my I-94 today I noticed that they only gave me 60 days to stay in USA when they normally give me 180. Also when they stamp your passport they provide you with the return date. Mine didn’t this time. I’m worried. I have a tourist visa that expires in 2024 and I’ve been here since July 31st, 2017. Supposedly I had to leave around the end of September. I had a vehicle accident in August. What can I do?

Mr. Lee answers:
The difficulty in your situation is that your overstay appears in large part to have occurred because you did not print out your I-94 copy previously which showed that you had only 60 days to stay in the US. The mitigating circumstance here, however, seems to be that CBP did not put the return date on your entry stamp. If you had a serious vehicle accident in August 2017 in which you suffered significant injury, you might be able to ask for an extension of time on a late basis on form I-539 application to extend or change status. Whether you can convince U.S.C.I.S. of the worthiness of a late extension application with only vehicle damage is questionable. The combination of the two factors may be persuasive, however, although the decision would be up to the adjudicator. Staying in the US 180 days after the expiration of your allowed time brings about a three-year bar upon return. Given the lengthy processing time for an I-539 application, you would likely exceed 180 days while waiting for the decision. You would then have a choice between staying in the US for the decision and hoping for an approval or leaving to avoid the three-year bar. I do note that an overstay in the country automatically invalidates your present visa. For you to return if you leave at present, you would have to obtain a new visa from the American consulate or embassy.


Q&A’s published on Lawyers.com and the Epoch Times – 12/15/2017 1. Can Parents Enter U.S. While Their I-130 Cases Pending? 2. Obtaining Green Card on TN Visa 3. What Should I Do If I Cannot Attend the Ceremony Oath?

1. Can Parents Enter U.S. While Their I-130 Cases Pending?

I filed I-130 for my father and mother back in 8/2017, received the I-797. Can they enter US in January while their cases are pending? They already have tourist visa (B2) for 5 years. If so then I am planning to just let them come in January and file I-485 (adjust status while they are here) I heard CBP (US Custom) may deny their entry since they have cases pending.

Mr. Lee answers:
Individuals who are in the immigration process may be able to come to the U. S. to visit, but would have to convince the Customs and Border Protection inspector that they have no immigrant intent on this trip to the U. S. I note that you have already filed I-130 petitions for your parents and so U.S.C.I.S. may have a problem with their adjustment of status when the petitions upon which they would be relying with the I-485 adjustment of status papers were filed prior to their entry to the States. Such action may lead an adjudicator to believe that your parents had the intent to immigrate on this trip when they entered the U. S.

2. Obtaining Green Card on TN Visa

We have had approved I140 with priority date of 2007. But our previous employer withdrawn that I140 in 2012. We immigrated to Canada in 2010 and became Canadian citizens through naturalization. Right now, my spouse is working on TN in USA. And we are trying to find our chances of switching from TN to green card with old priority date. Can we still use the priority date of 2007 on TN visa? 

Mr. Lee answers:
The TN is only a temporary working visa. There is no “switching” to the green card. Your spouse would in all likelihood have to go through the regular PERM labor certification/green card process with the present employer. Once the labor certification is approved, any approved I-140 petition’s priority date can be used for purposes of a new I-140 petition. I assume that the 2007 I-140 was for your spouse and not you.

3. What Should I Do If I Cannot Attend the Ceremony Oath?

I am going aboard because my mother is sick and she is alone there. I need to help her to find a doctor to help her. I bought already a ticket to Europe. I am afraid that I will be abroad when I must attend the ceremony oath. 

Mr. Lee answers:
It is never good when an individual misses the oath ceremony as this sometimes leads to denial of the naturalization application for abandonment even when the individual notifies U.S.C.I.S. and requests a postponement. However, that being said, you should write back to the local U.S.C.I.S. office to inform them of your situation and request a postponement. I suggest that you use mail with which you can have proof of delivery.  


Article “No Surprises In January 2018 Visa Bulletin; Dangers In Leaving The U. S. For NIV Consular Interviews; Varied H-1B RFE Response Strategies” as published in the Immigration Daily on December 15, 2017.

As published in Immigration Daily on December 15, 2017.

January 2008 visa bulletin

A short summary of the bulletin is that the final action dates (A chart) for family and employment based cases generally advanced except for assumedly temporary unavailability of certain religious workers and regional center investment cases (tied in with the machinations of Washington’s budget bill), and that the filing dates (B chart) for both family and employment remained the same. So the rest of this part of the article will only talk about the A chart. Most countries in the world saw family-based advances in the F-1 category for unmarried adult sons and daughters of U. S. citizens from 2/1/11 to 3/15/11; F-2A for spouses and unmarried children under the age of 21 of permanent residents from 12/22/15 to 2/1/16; F-2B for adult unmarried children of permanent residents from 11/22/10 to 12/1/10; F-3 for married sons and daughters of U. S. citizens from 9/8/05 to 10/8/05; and F-4 for siblings of U. S. citizens from 6/8/04 to 6/22/04. On the employment-based categories, EB-1 for extraordinary aliens, outstanding professors and researchers, and multinational executives and managers remained current worldwide; EB-2 for those with advanced degrees or exceptional aliens remained current for all of the world except for China which moved from 7/1/13 to 8/8/13 and India from 11/1/08 to 11/22/08; EB-3 for skilled workers or professionals was current for most of the world except for China which moved from 3/8/14 to 4/15/14, India from 10/15/06 to 11/1/06, and the Philippines from 1/15/16 to 2/15/16; EB-W Other Workers was current for most of the world except for China which moved from 7/1/06 to 12/22/06, India from 10/15/06 to 11/1/06, and the Philippines from 1/15/16 to 2/15/16; EB-4 for special immigrants including ministers remained current with the exception of Mexico which moved from 4/22/16 to 6/1/16 and the 3 countries of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras which went from current to 12/1/15; the other part of EB-4, certain religious workers, went from current for most of the world except for Mexico to unavailable worldwide; EB-5 direct cases remained current except for China which moved from 7/15/14 to 7/22/14; and EB-5 regional center cases went from current for most of the world except for China to unavailable worldwide.

Dangers of Leaving the United States for NIV interviews

Reports continue to pop up on the negative effects on adjudications of the Administration’s “Buy American Hire American” (BAHA) Executive Order which has found its way into the Department of State’s Foreign Affairs Manual which guides consular posts worldwide in nonimmigrant visa determinations. Cases involving applications from both new employer approved petitions and renewals have seen a spike in denials, administrative processing, lengthy questioning, and requests for further paperwork. Refusal rates have increased and telephonic investigations of local employers are up. As the risks attendant to consular interviews are now observably higher, persons who already have a change of status should well consider the factors before taking a trip back home which requires a new visa. Individuals with approved changes of status from U.S.C.I.S. should remember that a visa is not necessary to maintain legal status in this country. U.S.C.I.S. controls nonimmigrants in the country through I-797 approval sheets and paper or electronically retrieved I-94’s. A visa is usually only useful for traveling back and forth.

Varied H-1B RFE Response Strategies

Is there an immigration lawyer doing H-1B’s who does not have a response by now to U.S.C.I.S.’s barrage of RFEs attacking level I wages and the specialized nature of H-1B positions? I would wager not. The following just goes through some of the response strategies out there and a few of ours. At a meeting of the New York American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) Chapter last month, the observation was made that if U.S.C.I.S. gave an RFE just challenging the job as level I and you respond, then the agency would come back with the second RFE to say that the position was not a specialty occupation. Also that while the language in the OOH says that an occupation “typically” requires a bachelors degree, U.S.C.I.S. jumps on that by saying that not all people in the position have to have a bachelors degree. The panel pointed out the case, Residential Finance, for the proposition that even if an occupation’s requirements include disparate and various bachelors degrees, it is a specialty occupation if you can show that each field truly prepares one for the rigors of the duties. It recommended going to the unpublished AAO decisions in addition to citing Residential Finance to make a body of knowledge argument. One panelist viewed the language in the second part of the four-part regulatory criteria to prove specialized knowledge, “… In the alternative, an employer may show this particular position is so complex or unique that it can be performed only by an individual with a degree” as opening another avenue for response different from that of the fourth criteria to prove that “the nature of the specific duties are so specialized and complex that knowledge required to perform the duties is usually associated with the attainment of a baccalaureate or higher degree.” One agency specializing in working with attorneys and credentials evaluations proposed the solution of responding with an expert opinion letter explaining that level I does not mean that the job is entry-level, and then providing documentation that the job does require the level of specialization and higher education that meets H-1B requirements. AILA headquarters had earlier provided a practice pointer for responding to RFEs raising the level I or level II wage issue including arguing against the U.S.C.I.S. interpretation of DOL’s wage guidance of level I being only for those employees performing routine tasks requiring limited if any exercise of judgment by going through the entire wage guidance including walking the adjudicator through steps 1 through 5 of Appendix A; arguing that the regulations do not authorize U.S.C.I.S. to review the appropriateness of a wage level; that U.S.C.I.S. is misapplying the wage level system; that some positions are inherently specialty occupations regardless of the wage level; and that the wage level reflects the worker’s stature within the employer’s hierarchy, not whether the position falls within the regulatory definition of specialty occupation. Along with what I believe is a multitude of lawyers, we argue each of the 4 points of specialty occupation separately (if we can) pointing out exactly how the position fits within each of the points and supporting the first criteria that “a baccalaureate or higher degree or its equivalent is normally the minimum requirement for entry into the particular position” with references to case law, the OOH itself, and dictionary definitions. We also use expert evaluation letters dependent upon the client organization’s wishes although cognizant that their use is also being attacked. In arguing level I, we point out in many pages that USCIS does not have statutory nor regulatory authority to adjudicate the levels of a wage, and support the view with statutory and regulatory language along with DOL’s own wage guidances over the years. There is probably no magic avenue or bullet to win the day, but the large volume of evidence shows that U.S.C.I.S.’s H-1B views as spurred on by BAHA are plainly wrong.

Q&A’s published on Lawyers.com and the Epoch Times – 12/08/2017 1. Will My Biological Son Be Able to Petition for Me Being That He Was Adopted? 2. Left U.S. 4 Days After J-1 30 Grace Period Due to Illness…..Will This Affect An H1-B Application? 3. Married to a U.S. Citizen And Have Been Here Since 6 Years Old. Am I Able to Fix Papers? 4. Waiver Application Process

1. Will My Biological Son Be Able to Petition for Me Being That He Was Adopted?

Mr. Lee answers:
That depends upon whether your son gained any immigration benefits from his adoption. For example, if his adoptive parents gave him immigration benefits to the U. S., he would not be able to petition for you as his natural mother. If he immigrated independently to the U. S., he would be able to petition for you assuming that he goes to court and terminates the adoption.

2. Left U.S. 4 Days After J-1 30 Grace Period Due to Illness…..Will This Affect An H1-B Application?

In 2015 I departed the US 4 days after the end of my 30 day grace period on my J-1/DS-2019 because of illness. I had a flight booked to the UK within the grace period. However, after checking in my bags at the airport I passed out and collapsed in the security line (I had flu and very high fever). I was taken off the flight and rebooked on the next available flight which was 4 days later. I have an email from the airline confirming that I did not fly on the original booking date because of illness. The expiration on my I-94 was D/S. Is this likely to affect an H1-B application? 

Mr. Lee answers:
I do not see that your overstaying the grace period for such a short time because of illness at the airport for which you have documentation would be held against you in any visa application at a U. S. consulate or Embassy.

3. Married to a U.S. Citizen And Have Been Here Since 6 Years Old. Am I Able to Fix Papers?

I came to the US from Guatemala at the age of 6,went to school here graduated and went to college for two years got married to a US citizen 13 years ago we have 4 children am I able to fix my papers thru him or the dream act ?

Mr. Lee answers:
I will assume that you never ran afoul of Immigration or criminal laws except for perhaps entering the U. S. without inspection or overstaying. I will also assume that you entered the U. S. without inspection and are not eligible for adjustment of status to permanent residence. If both assumptions are true, you should be able to fix your papers through your husband.  You can take advantage of the Administration’s I-601A program under which, following the approval of an I-130 Petition for Alien Relative on your behalf by your husband, you would file for a provisional I-601A waiver while in the U. S. based upon extreme hardship to your husband if such was not granted. With 4 children and the length of your marriage, the possibility of approval is high. Following I-601A approval, your case would be consular processed and you would in all likelihood have a regular interview after which you would return to the U. S. with an immigrant visa.

4. Waiver Application Process

A friend of mine that is Australian is under a 10 year ban from the US and is wondering how to go about applying for a waiver to be unbanned so he can be reunited with his wife.

Mr. Lee answers:
Assuming that the wife is a U. S. citizen or permanent resident, she would petition for him and he would ultimately be interviewed at the American consulate or Embassy overseas. He would be refused for an immigrant visa and if eligible for a waiver, he would be instructed by the consulate or embassy to file one. If the ground was illegal presence in the U. S. for a year or more, he would be instructed to file an I-601 Application for Waiver of Ground of Excludability. If he was deported, he would be instructed to file form I-212 Application for Permission to Reapply for Admission into the U. S. after Deportation or Removal. Such waiver applications would be adjudicated by U.S.C.I.S., usually within a year.

Q&A’s published on Lawyers.com and the Epoch Times – 12/01/2017 1. Requesting For Evidence 2. Selective Service for U.S. Citizenship 3. Can My Stepchild Study While She Is Changing Visa Status (From B-2 to E-2 Dependant)? 4. Can My Long-term Girlfriend Who Is My Children’s Mother Be A Beneficiary in My Immigrant Case?

1. Requesting For Further Evidence

I am filing for my petition and I was asked to provide proof of all the things I have together with my wife. But I do not have all the requirements that they are asking for. I would like to get help with this issue please and thanks. Things were messed up with us and now I am not sure how to do this.

Mr. Lee answers:
While you cannot ignore the items that are requested, you can give other items that you believe would prove the bona fides of your marital relationship. Anything that you believe would be good proof of the fact that you are both living together – even police reports – can be used as long (as they do not show that you were an aggressor in domestic violence). Affidavits of others with knowledge of your situation are also relevant, especially if they are written by people with high credibility.

 2. Selective Service for U.S. Citizenship

I’m applying for my US citizenship. I am 30yrs old. I just found out that I had to apply to the selective service as a requirement for citizenship. I think I remember doing it when I signed up for Financial Aid. What do I do? 

Mr. Lee answers:
If you have already applied for selective service and now wish to obtain the record, you should go on to the website of the selective service at www.sss.gov in order to retrieve the information. You can then print out the page and keep it with you for the interview with U.S.C.I.S.

3. Can My Stepchild Study While She Is Changing Visa Status (From B-2 to E-2 Dependant)?

I moved to the USA few months ago with my wife and her child (7) all with a B2 visa. I just applied for an E2 Visa and I’m waiting for a response. My wife and her child are going to change status to become my dependants. I need to find a way to make her child go to school ASAP (I’ve been told that the change of status takes average 6 months). Can she study while she is changing status from B2 to E2? 

Mr. Lee answers:
While a child’s going to school may have a negative effect upon a change of status to F-1 student, I do not believe that there is a prohibition against allowing a child to go to school while changing to E-2. You may, however, have to convince the school district to allow your stepchild to register.

4. Can My Long-term Girlfriend Who Is My Children’s Mother Be A Beneficiary in My Immigrant Case?

My brother filled an application in 1997. I’m living with my women for 24 years. Can she also be a beneficiary? We have 3 kids together 20, 15, and 7 years.

Mr. Lee answers:
I assume that you are either a native of Mexico or the Philippines since the date of visa availability under the F-4 category would have long passed for a person born in any other country. That observation aside, the woman that you have been living with for 24 years can only be a beneficiary if she is legally married to you. The fact that you have three children together does not give her dependent status.

Q&A’s published on Lawyers.com and the Epoch Times – 11/24/2017 1. Is It Better to Have an Immigration Lawyer Fill Up I-130 Form? 2. Who Can I Get to Sponsor My Wife? 3. Property VS Green Card 4. How to Apply Citizenship While the Green Card Expired?

1. Is It Better to Have an Immigration Lawyer Fill Up I-130 Form?

Mr. Lee answers:
Although the I-130 petition for alien relative is one of the simpler immigration forms, we have seen many times where a mistake in filling out the form has led to drastic consequences. It is always better to have an immigration lawyer look over the form even if he or she does not fill it out. Whether that is entirely necessary may depend upon the particular facts of the case.

2.Who Can I Get to Sponsor My Wife?

She’s from Dominican Republic and I’m in the U.S. and I work off the books but have to proof of support i was wondering can her parents provide the support they live in her country but has a house there 

Mr. Lee answers:
Only permanent residents and US citizens can sponsor an individual for financial support on form I-864 when the individual applies for permanent residence. I suggest that under the circumstances you would have to have a cosponsor’s affidavit of support from a friend or relative. The affidavit of support of course would have to be credible.

3. Property VS Green Card

I live in Lagos Nigeria and I have friends in the states I am part owner of property there.  How do I get a visa to live there permanently?

Mr. Lee answers:
Being part owner of a property does not give you a leg up on obtaining a green card. Even if it was a commercial property, that would unfortunately not help in most cases as there is no treaty of navigation and commerce between Nigeria and the United States for purposes of long-term nonimmigrant visas like E-1 treaty trader or E-2 treaty investor. If, however, you are the part owner of a commercial business in which your share meets the requirements of the US EB-5 program for immigrant investors ($500,000 in targeted employment areas or $1 million in other areas), you may wish to consult with an immigration lawyer conversant with EB-5 cases for further advice as to how to proceed.

4. How to Apply Citizenship While the Green Card Expired?

My husband wants to obtain his citizenship, his residence card has been expired for more than 4 years. How can we go by obtaining his citizenship?

Mr. Lee answers:
Immigration laws require that a permanent resident keep a valid green card. Your husband should apply for a replacement green card on form I-90 Application for Replacement Green Card at the same time that he is applying for his citizenship.


Q&A’s published on Lawyers.com and the Epoch Times – 11/17/2017 1.How Long Will It Take for PERM? 2.Would I have Problem on Naturalization If I Never Filed Taxes Jointly With My Spouse? 3.Is There Anything I Can Apply For to Enter the U.S. Legally After Being Deported?

1. How Long Will It Take for PERM?

Our company plan to start PERM process in NY. How many days it will takes at least?

Mr. Lee answers:
If the PERM application encounters no problems and taking into account the amount of time to obtain a prevailing wage and the required recruitment, it would normally take approximately 8-9 months to process the labor certification. That is assuming that all parties cooperate as quickly as possible with requests for documentation and action.

2. Would I have Problem on Naturalization If I Never Filed Taxes Jointly With My Spouse?

I want to do my citizenship but we never filed our taxes together always separate and head of household. Would I have problems?  If I do, would they charge us with back taxes for all the years we were married and not filing together? 

Mr. Lee answers:
Although I am not familiar with IRS rules, my information is that registering as head of household means that the applicant is either single, divorced, or lived apart six months or more in a calendar year. If you fit none of these categories, you might certainly owe the government some money. I do note that immigration examiners are not IRS employees and do not collect back taxes on behalf of IRS. A naturalization examiner’s general mission is the grant or denial of naturalization applications.

3. Is There Anything I Can Apply For to Enter the U.S. Legally After Being Deported?

I was a permanent resident since 1/2009. I got involved in a relationship to who is now my wife in 2012. We had a lot of fights and arguments and one day we made the mistake of putting our hands on each other and I grabbed her by the neck and she called the police her mom bailed me out the next day. In December 2013, I pled guilty on the terms of deferred adjudication on probation for 4 years (I’m not sure if I said that right). My court appointed lawyer(who didn’t even bother to show up sent instead a substitute) told me that I would not get deported unless I broke any Conditions(which I never did) and that as soon as I completed it, it wouldn’t affect me at all. In 4/2015 ICE officers lied to me into talking to them and when they presented themselves to my house arrested me for an immigration warrant I had without knowing. In 7/2015 I was deported. My wife my daughter and I are living in Mexico currently but we would like for me to go back home legally.

Mr. Lee answers:
It is difficult for me to give advice in your case as it is not clear whether you were deported for the incident on which you pled guilty in December 2013 or whether there was some other occasion for which the immigration warrant was issued. You also did not disclose in your fact pattern any occurrences in an immigration court which leads me to suspect that you had a previous order. I believe that the best thing that you could do now would be to have an immigration lawyer look over your entire immigration and criminal history. If you do not have a complete copy of your files, you should have him or her secure a copy under the Freedom of Information Act for immigration and with the criminal court for your crime. Only in this way would the lawyer have an accurate idea of what he or she is facing.


Alan Lee, Attorney-At-Law, Wins Two Immigration Administrative Appeals at AAO.

The law firm won two recent non-precedential decisions at the U.S.C.I.S. Administrative Appeals Office which sided with us in our appeals of I-601 denials. An I-601 approval is required to waive grounds of inadmissibility, which in these cases involved fraud or misrepresentation. The standard required for waiver approval is the establishment of extreme hardship to a U. S. citizen or lawful permanent resident spouse or parent. Following such a determination of extreme hardship, U.S.C.I.S. must also make a decision on whether a waiver should be approved in the discretion of the agency. The decisions may be of some interest to the readers. In the first one, Matter of L-C-, ID #553828 (AAO Nov. 2, 2017), a large factor in establishing extreme hardship was that although both applicant and qualifying spouse were Chinese, the spouse was born and raised in Hong Kong, and had no ties to mainland China, the home country of the applicant. Also that he maintained that he was unfamiliar with the language, culture, and customs of China. In the second case, Matter of P-Y-K-, ID #639671 (AAO Oct. 31, 2017), the AAO favorably balanced on the side of the applicant the negative factors on discretion of fraud or misrepresentation when procuring a nonimmigrant visa and subsequently entering the United States, the applicant’s failure to depart pursuant to a voluntary departure in 1987, her deportation order in 1993 (which we had previously reopened and terminated), and periods of unlawful presence and employment in the U. S. against a showing of many factors including her son’s service in the Armed Forces of the U. S. 

The full decisions can be read here: Matter of L-C-, and Matter of P-Y-K-.

Q&A’s published on the World Journal Weekly – 11/12/2017 1.What To Do About Our Son Who Was Born After We Started the Immigration Case? 2.Five-year Bar on Coming To The U. S. Since August 2012, Can I Get a Traveling Visa Now?

1. What To Do About Our Son Who Was Born After We Started the Immigration Case?

My sister applied for me in 2005 and the waiting time is just about over. We have been given papers (DS-260) to fill out and send back to the National Visa Center. But the papers are only for me and my wife since our son was born in 2009. What do we do?

Dear reader,
You may wish to back up a step and notify the National Visa Center (NVC) that you have had a child since the I-130 petition was filed and request the NVC to add him to your immigration case. When that is successfully done, the NVC will send a separate fee bill for your son and after your payment of it, you will be able to also submit a DS-260 form for him so that your family can all immigrate at the same time.

2. Five-year Bar on Coming To The U. S. Since August 2012, Can I Get a Traveling Visa Now?

In August 2012, I tried to come to the U. S. on my visitor’s visa after spending most of the past 3 years since 2009 in the U. S. and just going out occasionally. But then I was told that I no longer qualified for the visitor’s visa because of all the time that I had been spending in the U. S., and I was given papers and told not to come back for 5 years. Now 5 years is over. Can I apply again for a U. S. visitors visa?

Dear reader,
I note that even after the five-year bar, US consular officers will interview to determine whether a B1/B2 visa can be given in the discretion of the officer. Your having been declared inadmissible previously will be a negative, and it is strongly recommended that you bring as much evidence as you can of your ties and bonds with your home country to the interview.


Q&A’s published on Lawyers.com and the Epoch Times – 11/10/2017 1.Adoption 2.Would it Be Legally Possible for International Student to Go Inside the United States With ESTA and Then Go To Mexico and Come Back to the US? 3.I Unfortunately Came Illegal to USA, but I Pay Taxes and Am Married and I Got Approved on I-130 , I-824, So Can I Apply for I-485 and I-765 Now or I-94?

1. Adoption

I was wondering if I could bring my nice to US through adoption? He is 18 years old and I am US citizen.

Mr. Lee answers:
Unfortunately you are not able to bring your niece to the US through adoption as any adoption would have to be completed before the child turned 16 in order for Immigration to consider it for immigration purposes.

2. Would it Be Legally Possible for International Student to Go Inside the United States With ESTA and Then Go To Mexico and Come Back to the US?

I am a Japanese student from Japan traveling America with ESTA now. I’ve been here since 9/20/2017. I plan to go to Mexico in early December for a couple of weeks and then come back to America since I will be an international student at UC Berkeley for about three months. So, I was planning to re-enter into America with my student visa (F1 VISA). Will I be able to come back to America without any trouble? Or is there a certain place I have to go before coming back to America? 

Mr. Lee answers:
If you already have an F-1 visa in your passport and if the schooling at UC Berkeley will start within 30 days of your reentering the US, I do not see any problems with your plan. There is no place that you would have to go before coming back to the US in the above situation. If you do not yet have an F-1 visa, you would likely have to go back to Japan to apply for one before coming back.

3. I Unfortunately Came Illegal to USA, but I Pay Taxes and Am Married and I Got Approved on I-130 , I-824, So Can I Apply for I-485 and I-765 Now or I-94 ?

How many more applications I need apply till I get to the application to social security and work permit?

Mr. Lee answers:
If you came illegally to the country, you would not be eligible for adjustment of status unless you also qualified for the benefits of §245 (i) in which under the most current version, you would have to have a labor certification application or immigrant visa petition filed on your behalf by April 30, 2001, and been physically present in the country on December 21, 2000. Otherwise the forms that you mention have no applicability to you except for the I-130 petition for alien relative which you say is already approved. Currently if your wife is a US citizen or LPR, you may be able to apply for the Administration’s I- 601A provisional waiver program under which the 10 year bar for staying in the US illegally for at least a year is waived if you can demonstrate that a return to your home country permanently would cause extreme hardship to your spouse. The beauty of the I-601A provisional waiver program is that you can make the application, stay in the US to see its result, and if approved, schedule an interview with the American consulate or embassy in your home country. The visa interview would in all likelihood be normal.