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Hello everybody! :)

 

I have few questions and I hope you can help me with that.

 

I entered USA on a J1 Visa (18 months) and it will expire in January 2018. J1 Visa holder are allowed to stay 30 days longer after it expires for vacation reasons.

So I have to leave USA latest on February 13th

 

I met a girl almost a year ago and I just purposed to her recently because we would like to ger married and start a family. :)

To make sure everything will work out with my Visa, I decided to hire an emigration attorney.

 

The attorney said we need to do a K1 or K3 Visa and the I-130 and I-485 forms.

 

So now my questions.

 

We would like to get married in March or in May, but my Visa will already be expired by that.

So we probably will do a court marriage before so I can stay in USA and we will do a nice wedding later.

 

But my attorney said, even we do a court wedding and file the I-485 form, the process could take longer than February and I am officially not allowed to stay in USA no more.

I read in the internet, while the AOS (Adjustment of Status) is pending, you can stay or actually you are "not allowed" to leave USA?

 

So what is true now?

I don´t want to leave my girl and wait for papers.

We plan to marry in court pretty soon so we have a few months time for the paperwork.

 

Thank you! :)

 

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10 minutes ago, Grafit said:

Hello everybody! :)

 

I have few questions and I hope you can help me with that.

 

I entered USA on a J1 Visa (18 months) and it will expire in January 2018. J1 Visa holder are allowed to stay 30 days longer after it expires for vacation reasons.

So I have to leave USA latest on February 13th

 

I met a girl almost a year ago and I just purposed to her recently because we would like to ger married and start a family. :)

To make sure everything will work out with my Visa, I decided to hire an emigration attorney.

 

The attorney said we need to do a K1 or K3 Visa and the I-130 and I-485 forms.

 

So now my questions.

 

We would like to get married in March or in May, but my Visa will already be expired by that.

So we probably will do a court marriage before so I can stay in USA and we will do a nice wedding later.

 

But my attorney said, even we do a court wedding and file the I-485 form, the process could take longer than February and I am officially not allowed to stay in USA no more.

I read in the internet, while the AOS (Adjustment of Status) is pending, you can stay or actually you are "not allowed" to leave USA?

 

So what is true now?

I don´t want to leave my girl and wait for papers.

We plan to marry in court pretty soon so we have a few months time for the paperwork.

 

Thank you! :)

 

You can adjust your status in here, you don't have to leave the country and apply for a K1 to do that. And yes, the process will probably take longer than a few months but you'd be allowed to stay in the country while adjusting your status. I don't know why your attorney said that K1 & K3 are your only options but from what you said, you can definitely adjust your status here.

 

You just gotta make sure to show proof you and your fiancée have lived a life together, with things such as joint bank accounts, anything to prove you guys have a life together. And when you mentioned while your AOS is pending you're "not allowed to leave the country", it just means that you can't leave the country while it is pending otherwise it is considered abandonememt of AOS application BUT that's why the Advance Parole is for, so make sure you file for that when filing your AOS packet.

 

hopefully I was of help with your questions regarding the subject :) I'm adjusting status from a J-1 visa so I was surprised to read what your lawyer had said.

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Your attorney doesn't seem to know much. First.. if you marry you will file i130 - you will not apply for a K1 which is for fiance living abroad and uses the i129f petition.

 

Second yes you are right - after filing aos you are in an authorized period of stay - you don't technically have a status but you are legal.

 

Also if your J1 came with stay at home 2 year requirement, you'll need to go back to your country and wait it out as far as I know - someone else can chime in on that.

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This is so wrong. Go back to your home country and apply for counselor processing. Have some mercy on future J1 Prospects from your country. US does statisticall analysis on all the visa issues from every country and those who mis-use their visa and don't go back. The bar is then set high for the next applicant from that country.

 

 

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Hey!

 

Thank you so much guys, you are awesome! :)

 

I do not have the 2 years rule, so I´m the lucky one lol.

 

I could not find any other people they are on a J1 in USA and marry, I googled for couple hours.

It´s so good to see I finally found somebody here in this forum who is in the same position like I am.

 

Okay, maybe my attorney meant we only need to file I-130 and I-485. What is okay how I understand. But he said he needs to check the K3 if that Visa is faster and can make me stay while the process is pending. hmmm :huh:

The I-485 is the AOS right?

The attorney said, it´s better to get married very soon so there is enough time left to file the papers and I do not have to leave.

I was worried, and told my fiance we need to get married soon or she needs to wait few months until I can come back to USA after I have to leave in February.

 

He said, I technically could stay longer after my J1 expires, BUT if the police catches me, I could be in troubles because I´m out of status (or something like that).

 

I was thinking to go back to Austria after my Visa expires, but I don´t want to leave my wife and her daughter.

I want to go back to Austria in May after the wedding, because the honeymoon is supposed to be in Europe :)

 

But still, I just don´t want to get in any troubles and at the same time don´t want to be away from my girl.

 

I think the best way is to get married soon and start all the paper work, I might be very lucky and I get it before the J1 expires.

 

 

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You will definitely not be out of status. As said, once filed (yes i485 is the AOS form, but you need to file it with also the i-130 petition) you are in an authorized period of stay and your receipt notice (NOA1) from USCIS will be your proof of that. 
You should still get married and file as soon as you can - once you are past your J1 expiring you won't be able to travel until you get your AP (form i-131, advanced parole - you apply for free along with the i485) so leaving for Europe in May is the deadline you'll want to meet then. Current processing time of the i-131 is 3-4 months but can take longer. 

You will also apply for a EAD (i765 for free with AOS) at the same time if you wish to work before you get your green card. The GC can take up to a year to get.

 

AP/EAD are given as a combo card.

Edited by Suss&Camm

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Since your J-1 does not have a 2YHRR, you can just marry and do AOS fine. No need for a K-1 (and K-3 is obsolete anyway). Your lawyer is either incredibly uninformed or there was a big misunderstanding here. @Suss&Camm explained the process well.

 

31 minutes ago, L0bster00 said:

This is so wrong. Go back to your home country and apply for counselor processing. Have some mercy on future J1 Prospects from your country. US does statisticall analysis on all the visa issues from every country and those who mis-use their visa and don't go back. The bar is then set high for the next applicant from that country.

How is it wrong at all? They are not abusing their J-1 and they are using a legal option to obtain permanent residency due to circumstances that happened while they were in the country.

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some words of advice: 

1) ignore @L0bster00's comment. This is not visa abuse, it's called change of circumstances.

2) fire the lawyer

3) read through the guide for adjusting status: http://www.visajourney.com/content/i130guide2. There are a few things that are out of date so make sure you get the most recent forms and instructions from uscis.gov (i-130, i-485, i-864, i-765, i-131, medical i-693)

4) start saving up $$$$ as it's an expensive process. For AOS/130 alone, it will be about $2,000. If your fiancee is a student as well, you may need a co-sponsor

5) do a court wedding and file your paperwork no later than January 1 if you want to travel in May

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I know someone who did AOS from a j1, they also didn't have the 2yr rule and their case actually finished in about 6-7 months. No, you can not leave til your AOS is done and you should consult the AOS forms page on this site, it breaks down all you need which is nothing to do with a k1. 

 

This was in 2015 I think, when my j1 friend adjusted. 

Edited by sparkles_

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9 minutes ago, sparkles_ said:

I know someone who did AOS from a j1, they also didn't have the 2yr rule and their case actually finished in about 6-7 months. No, you can not leave til your AOS is done and you should consult the AOS forms page on this site, it breaks down all you need which is nothing to do with a k1. 

 

This was in 2015 I think, when my j1 friend adjusted. 

 

Just for OP's info, that time frame doesn't have so much to do with them adjusting from a J1 as it does with the GC processing times at their local office. That's your best indicator on how long it will be for your GC.

Edited by Suss&Camm

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40 minutes ago, Suss&Camm said:

 

Just for OP's info, that time frame doesn't have so much to do with them adjusting from a J1 as it does with the GC processing times at their local office. That's your best indicator on how long it will be for your GC.

Ugh, you're so right, my bad. I suppose what I was  getting at but missed was that as a j1 with no home stay required, you will have the same AOS as any other person for the most part 

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Fire that attorney.

 

Marry well before the expiration of the J1 and apply for AOS. The EAD (which would allow you to work) takes 4 months, so I recommend trying to have that by the time your J1 expires because (I'm guessing) you don't want to be out of work for long.

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2 hours ago, L0bster00 said:

This is so wrong. Go back to your home country and apply for counselor processing. Have some mercy on future J1 Prospects from your country. US does statisticall analysis on all the visa issues from every country and those who mis-use their visa and don't go back. The bar is then set high for the next applicant from that country.

 

 

Very true... the best way to eliminate people doing AOS from those visas would be just to simply not make it possible. It would be more beneficial for most people if adjusting from certain visas such as J1 and B-visas wouldn't be possible. It would require people to go the longer, but more adequate way and get a K1 or CR1 visa. That way people from certain countries that have difficulties obtaining those visas for exactly that reason would have a higher chance of approval. Of course that would also mean a higher chance of overstays... I'm sure there's a reason why they are still allowing adjustments from these visas...

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