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1 Self Petition Green Card Options Tien-Li (TL) Loke Walsh, Esq. Loke Walsh Immigration Law, PC (310) Alma Real Drive, Suite 118 Pacific Palisades, CA Loke Walsh Immigration Law, PC (all rights reserved) The contents of this document are proprietary and should not be duplicated or shared without express permission from Loke Walsh Immigration Law, PC

2 Diversity (DV) Lottery 50,000 green cards Application period October/part of November No application fee Requires High-school diploma or 2 years of professional experience

3 Green Card Lottery Must be eligible to participate Based on country of birth (not citizenship) Countries that are NOT eligible include: Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, P.R. China, Colombia, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Haiti, India, Jamaica, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, South Korea, United Kingdom (except Northern Ireland) and Vietnam Persons born in Hong Kong SAR, Macau SAR and Taiwan are eligible! Where is your spouse born? Cross-chargeability

4 Family Based Immigrant Visas Immediate Relative: spouse, parent, minor children of U.S. citizens o Fast track processing within 3-6 months o Immediate benefits work permit and travel document within 2-3 months o Conditional 2 year green card (marriage cases) June 2013: same-sex spouses of U.S. citizens are eligible to apply for green cards What about U.S. born children? o must be 21 years old to petition

5 Family Based Immigrant Visas continued... Unmarried Adult Children of U.S. citizens (F1) (8-10 year backlog) Spouse/Children of Legal Permanent Resident (LPR) (F2A) (2-3 year backlog) Unmarried adult children of LPR (F2B) (9-10 year backlog) Married adult children of U.S. citizens (F3) (over 10 years) Brothers and sisters of U.S. citizens (F4) (over 10 years)

6 Self- Petitioning Options EB-11 Extraordinary Ability Demonstrate sustained national or international acclaim and recognition for achievements in the field of expertise Extraordinary defined as: a level of expertise indicating that person is one of the small percentage who have risen to the very top of the field of endeavor If already have O-1 under sciences, athletics, business, education will likely qualify for EB-1 One-time achievement (major, international recognized award) or at least 3 out of 10 criteria

7 Criteria: Extraordinary Ability Lesser national or international prizes or awards Membership in associations requiring outstanding achievements Published materials or mainstream media written about the alien Participation, individually or on a panel, as the judge of the work of others Alien s original scientific, scholarly, artistic, athletic or businessrelated contributions of major significance Authorship of scholarly articles in professional or major trade publications or other media Leading or critical role for distinguished organizations or establishments High compensation/salary *** Comparable evidence may also be used if the standards do not readily apply to the individual s occupation

8 EB-1 Process Two applications: I-140 Immigrant Visa Petition I-485 Application to Adjust Status to Permanent Residence (AOS) Combo card within days (combined employment and travel authorization) File concurrently or separately Can premium process I-140 petition (may not PP I-485)

9 EB-2 National Interest Waiver (NIW) No premium processing Criteria Work has intrinsic merit Work is national in scope In the national interest to waive the labor certification process Must show that past record justifies the belief that you will continue to serve in the national interest of the United States

10 National Interest Waiver Useful evidence includes: Publication of scholarly books and articles Citation record Participation, individually or on a panel, as the judge of the work of others (peer review activity) Original contributions of major significance (letters) National grants or funding Conference presentations Playing a critical role in scientific or research studies

11 NIW for Entrepreneurs Entrepreneur in Residence program (EIR) oniws ois it really something new?

12 NIW Process Two applications: I-140 Immigrant Visa Petition I-485 Application to Adjust Status to Permanent Residence (AOS) Combo card within days (combined employment and travel authorization) File concurrently or separately (priority date must be current to file concurrently) Can premium process I-140 petition (may not PP I-485)

13 Priority Date (PD) = date of filing PERM application or filing of I- 140 Immigrant Visa Petition If retrogressed can t file I-485 AOS until PD is current Visa Bulletin (

14 Retrogression Options for Chinese/Indian faculty and staff Consider filing two applications (EB-1 and NIW) New benefit: EAD for H-4 spouses if H-1B has approved I-140

15 Tips to Build an EB-1 or NIW Case Publish or perish international peerreviewed journals Speak at national or international conferences Engage in peer-review activity for journals, conference committees, scientific boards Mainstream media coverage do it! Challenges? Unpredictability

16 EB-5 Investor Visas Million Dollar Investor Green Card Must create 10 jobs $500,000 in area of high unemployment % above national unemployment rate Must create 10 jobs Cannot use retained earnings as part of investment

17 EB-5 Regional Programs $500,000 in pre-approved program Pooled investment

18 3 step process EB-5 Process I-526 Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur I Adjustment of Status Application 2 year conditional green card I-829 Removes conditional aspect of green card

19 EB-1 Employment-Based Options Requiring Sponsorship Outstanding Professor/Researcher (EB-12 or EB-1B) EB-2 and EB-3 PERM Special Handling Labor Certification for University Teachers PERM Labor Certification Schedule A, Group II, Alien of Exceptional Ability in the Arts and Sciences

20 Common Green Card Issues When to Start Green Card Process What is latest you should start? 4.5 years into H-1B Maintenance of status Always maintain underlying status

21 What Happens When You Reach 6-year Cap? Recapturing time spent outside the U.S. 2 ways to extend H-1B beyond 6 years Green card application pending for more than 1 year Issued in one-year increments I-140 approved and cannot file I-485 application because of backlogs or retrogression Issued in three-year increments

22 What Happens To The Green Card If You Change Employers? Can keep green card if: I-140 approved; and I-485 pending for more than 180 days (approx. 6 months); and job is same or similar position If I-140 approved but retrogressed (no I-485), must start over with new PERM but can keep priority date

23 I Have my Green Card, What Now? Maintaining the green card Physical presence requirements Becoming a U.S. citizen Problematic Issues: Extended absences from the U.S. Males Selective Service Registration Filing taxes as a non-resident/failure to file taxes Arrests

24 Hot Topics: Immigration Reform Employment Authorization for select group of H-4s H-1B spouse must have approved I-140 or H-1B spouse must have approved H-1B beyond the sixyear limit (i.e. an H-1B in 7 th year or 8 th year or 9 th year or more, of H-1B status) based on a PERM application or I-140 petition that has been filed and pending for over 365 days.

25 Hot Topics: Immigration Reform Expands Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) USCIS expected to begin accepting applications on February 18, 2015 but ON HOLD because of federal court injunction New Deferred Action for Parental Accountability (DAPA) USCIS expected to begin accepting applications in mid-to-late May 2015 but ON HOLD because of federal court injunction USCIS is NOT accepting any DAPA or expanded DACA applications

26 Immigration Reform Other proposals (awaiting further details/guidance/regulations) include: Expanding OPT Parole for foreign entrepreneurs Improvement of Adjustment of Status process to allow early registration Visa Modernization to make optimal use of numbers Expansion of provisional waiver program USCIS will update guidance: L-1B Job portability

27 Q & A For follow-up questions: Tien-Li Loke Walsh, Esq. Rahul Soni, Esq. 881 ALMA REAL DRIVE, SUITE 118 PACIFIC PALISADES, CA T: (310) FOR IMMIGRATION UPDATES: lokewalsh loke-walsh-immigration-law Lokewalsh.com/feed

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