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prashant37

Married to US Citizen, On OPT, wanting to go outside US for honeymoon

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I apologize in advance as I didn't know which forum category to post this under.

Basically, I had initially entered the US under A-1 dependant visa, completed my bachelors in the US. After my parent left the country I had to change my status from A-1 to F-1 so naturally, I never got an F-1 visa since only a change of status was filed from within the US.

I currently have an I-20, and since I have since graduated, I am currently on OPT and am also employed.

It has been 4 months since I have been married to a US citizen and we have already booked our honeymoon for the middle of January 2017 and plan to be back by the first week of February.

I spoke with my international student advisor at my alumni university and she gave be all the stamped paper work. I was also told that it is not a good idea to leave the country especially because a) i don't have an F-1 visa but only an I-20 and b) if I do decide to leave the US for honeymoon then I must visit the US embassy at the visiting country to get an F-1 visa asap prior to leaving that country so that I am eligible for re-entry.

The main issue: since I am married to US citizen, when applying for F-1 during honeymoon outside US, they may question me and if they see that I am married to US citizen, they will realize that I intend to immigrate, thus denying me my visa to re-enter.

I plan on contacting a lawyer tomorrow to see where I stand and how to approach this. If push comes to shove, I may have to cancel my honeymoon so that I don't encounter re-entry issues.

My question: how much of a risk is this? What are the chances of me leaving the US and visiting the US embassy and they simply denying my F-1 and I will no longer be able to come back to the states? Any suggestions, advice?

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You're right; it's a risk.

The safer course is to not depart the US until you've filed your I-485 and obtained AP, allowing you to travel internationally.

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You're right; it's a risk.

The safer course is to not depart the US until you've filed your I-485 and obtained AP, allowing you to travel internationally.

By filing i-485, from what I understand, that is one of the applications I need to submit when applying for my greencard correct? I have no idea how this process will take, let alone trying to get my status straightened out within a month-and-a-half's time.

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You would follow this guide:

http://www.visajourney.com/content/i130guide2

It would take around 90 days to obtain your Advance Parole which would allow you to travel overseas whilst you wait for your application to be adjudicated.

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You are at a very high risk of not getting a student visa when you travel since you are already married. Don't take the risk. The best solution is for you to postpone the honeymoon and start adjusting your status. You can travel when your AP is approved.

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Thank you all for your prompt replies. I have also confirmed my situation with a lawyer and have decided to not step outside of the US. Instead, I am immediately starting my GC application, especially because all USCIS applications are getting a significant fee increase effective Dec 23, 2016.

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