1. How Can I Expedite Process to Obtain Green Card as a Spouse of U.S. Citizen?
My husband is a US citizen, I am Swiss, married in 1995. I have applied in Phoenix I am told it takes 20 months! We have recently moved to Scottsdale as a permanent residence. Currently I have a B-2 visa. I need to have a social security number asap for a number of formalities here and in Switzerland and I understand I cannot get it without a resident status.
Mr. Lee answers:
The processing times of U.S.C.I.S. are an approximation, and many cases are called to interview before the end of the stated processing periods. That being said, even if the true processing time in your case is 20 months, U.S.C.I.S. would not expedite your case unless it was emergent. Obtaining a Social Security number can be done without having an approved case. If you file for employment authorization on form I-765 Application for Employment Authorization at the same time that you file the I-485 Adjustment of Status Application To Permanent Residence, the agency will normally process a work authorization within 3-6 months. With a work authorization card, you can apply for and obtain a Social Security card within a month.
2. Can I Change B-1 Visa into H-1B or Permanent Residency in USA?
I travel to USA every two years because my brother family is in New York so my whole family is on B-1 Visa. Actually, I applied 2 times for H-1B visa but unfortunately my name was not been selected due to random selection process. Last time for H-1B I applied on 2016. My brother has own company is New York and few other companies from family. They want to hire as IT Professional in their office but due to random selection process in H-1B I am unsuccessful. Is there any way to get employed over there on my brother’s company without going to random selection process OR if I am been in USA , can I change my status from B-1 to H-1B directly.
Mr. Lee answers:
Unknown factors in your question make it difficult to give good advice. Where were you born? What is the nature of your brother’s company? What is the setup of his company? Is it profitable? What other options might you have? I suggest that you make an appointment with an immigration lawyer who can go over all of your circumstances. Insofar as your question of whether you can change status from B-1 to H-1B directly, you would likely not be able to do so with your brother’s company because of timing issues, but might be able to do it with a cap exempt organization such as an institution of higher education, an organization affiliated with an institution of higher education, a government research Institute, or a nonprofit research institute. Companies like your brother’s are subject to the annual cap on H-1B visas, and can only file H-1B visa petitions during the first five business days of each April.
3. If I Have a Green Card for 2 Years, Can I Divorce Before This Times Expire Without Losing it?
I applied for a green card but my situation with my wife is not good anymore. I am thinking about getting divorce but don’t know if I will lose all my process and my green card.
Mr. Lee answers:
I assume that you are a conditional resident through your wife and then you will have to file an I-751 application to remove the conditional basis on resident status within the 90 day period before the second anniversary of the conditional resident grant. If you are divorced or have a legal separation, you are prohibited from filing a joint petition with your wife to remove the conditional basis. However, with a divorce, you can file a petition by yourself on the basis that the marriage was bona fide at the beginning and attach all evidence showing such in the I-751 petition. You can also remove the condition by showing that you are a battered spouse or that you would suffer extreme hardship if you return to the home country, such hardship having occurred during the period of conditional residence.