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jmyun1004

OPT to TN Visa (Canadian citizen wanting to work in US)

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Filed: F-1 Visa Country: Canada
Timeline

Hi everyone,

First post here. I am a Canadian citizen, and I just wrapped up my MA degree here in DC. I am currently on OPT status under my F1 visa, which is valid until next summer.

I currently work at a boutique US management consulting firm in DC, and am hoping to get obtain TN status while my OPT is still active. I've read that the "Management Consultant" category is the most heavily scrutinized when applying for the TN, though I believe that I meet the qualifications.

A couple questions I had:

1) Since I'm already in the US on valid work authorization, I have the option to either apply for the TN at a port-of-entry (POE) or apply for "Change of Status" with the I-129 form. Since I have my OPT for the next several months, timing is not really an issue for me, and the difference in fees is not a huge concern. However, aside from that, can anyone advise on which option would be better/less "risky"?

2) If it's advisable to apply at a port of entry, would I be able to still enter the US on my F1 visa/OPT if my TN request were denied? What other options would I have if it were denied (e.g. could I try again at another POE or go through the change-of-status process)?

3) What are your experiences with the various POEs? My family back home is based in Toronto, so that's where I would be leaving from in Canada.

4) Should I retain the services of a lawyer in preparing my application, or would that just be a waste of money?

Any other advice would be greatly appreciated--I don't know many people who have been in my situation, so I'm hoping that this forum might have some answers :D

Thanks in advance,

L

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Filed: Citizen (pnd) Country: Canada
Timeline

I came down initially on a TN visa. But, mine was easy - I'm a nurse so was ushered in at my POE. I did decide to have a 1hr consultation with an immigration lawyer to ask my questions. I found it helpful.


First Entered US with TN Status: 04/13/2012
Engaged: 08/24/2012
Married: 08/10/2013

Adjustment of Status from TN Status to Permanent Resident:
Day 00: AOS mailed by USPS priority Post: 05/19/2014
Day 02: AOS package arrived: 05/21/2014
Day 08: Text/email notice of acceptance: 05/27/2014
Day 11: NOAs for I-130, I-485, I-765, I-131 received, 05/30/2014
Day 14: Biometrics notice received with an appointment of June 17, 2914 at 3pm. 06/02/2014
Day 15: attempted walk-in successful after a very long wait 06/03/2014
Day 38: email notice that I-485 has moved to testing & interview! 06/26/2014
Day 77: EAD/AP - card production 08/06/2014
Day 84: EAD/AP card received 08/13/2014
Day 129: Infopass appointment for an update (very helpful!) 09/24/2014
Day 136: Email received with interview date 10/01/2014
Day 138: Interview notice received! 10/03/2014
Day 170: Green Card Approved on the Spot! 11/04/2014
Day 178: Green Card Received 11/12/2014

REMOVAL OF CONDITIONS:

Day 00: ROC Package (Weighing 1.7kg -- 3lbs 13oz) mailed by USPS Priority Post: 09/13/2016

Day 03: ROC Package Received: 09/16/2016

Day 07: Check Cashed: 09/20/2016

Day Too many to count: Received Approval 02/05/2018

NATURALIZATION

Day 00: Submitted file online for N400 -- 07/31/2020

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Canada
Timeline

My experience with the TN approval and renewals has also been easy (engineer). The key is to have as much documentation as possible, in case they ask for it. Job offer letter, copy of your degree, even transcripts. Need to be able to convince the IO that your job is related to your degree.

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Filed: Citizen (pnd) Country: Canada
Timeline

Have copies of everything you bring so they can keep a set too.


First Entered US with TN Status: 04/13/2012
Engaged: 08/24/2012
Married: 08/10/2013

Adjustment of Status from TN Status to Permanent Resident:
Day 00: AOS mailed by USPS priority Post: 05/19/2014
Day 02: AOS package arrived: 05/21/2014
Day 08: Text/email notice of acceptance: 05/27/2014
Day 11: NOAs for I-130, I-485, I-765, I-131 received, 05/30/2014
Day 14: Biometrics notice received with an appointment of June 17, 2914 at 3pm. 06/02/2014
Day 15: attempted walk-in successful after a very long wait 06/03/2014
Day 38: email notice that I-485 has moved to testing & interview! 06/26/2014
Day 77: EAD/AP - card production 08/06/2014
Day 84: EAD/AP card received 08/13/2014
Day 129: Infopass appointment for an update (very helpful!) 09/24/2014
Day 136: Email received with interview date 10/01/2014
Day 138: Interview notice received! 10/03/2014
Day 170: Green Card Approved on the Spot! 11/04/2014
Day 178: Green Card Received 11/12/2014

REMOVAL OF CONDITIONS:

Day 00: ROC Package (Weighing 1.7kg -- 3lbs 13oz) mailed by USPS Priority Post: 09/13/2016

Day 03: ROC Package Received: 09/16/2016

Day 07: Check Cashed: 09/20/2016

Day Too many to count: Received Approval 02/05/2018

NATURALIZATION

Day 00: Submitted file online for N400 -- 07/31/2020

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I believe the reason why Management Consultant is so highly scrutinized is because it's one of the few (or maybe only?) TN categories that you can use if you don't have a university degree in your proposed field of work. If you have that, then it might not be so difficult.

When you say you're applying, do you not mean that your company is applying on your behalf? And if so, can they secure a lawyer for your application?

My husband came to the US on two separate Management Consultant TNs for two different companies and in both cases, the companies had lawyers prepare the evidence paperwork which was pretty extensive, but he is missing the proper degree. The first company actually was able to submit the paperwork in advance such that he was preapproved before he went to the POE. If you are worried, you might ask your company to do the same, although it is more expensive. For his second TN, he applied at the POE with his giant dossier and had no issues. In both cases, he came through the Montreal airport. They did take all his paperwork.

I think if you do a search for TN denial, you'll find an answer about what happens if you get rejected. My recollection (when we were worried about my husband getting through) was that you would not be allowed in if your TN was denied.


 

AOS from TN (I'm the petitioner)

05-14-14: Married!

05-22-14: (Day 00) - AOS package (I-130/I-485/I-131/I-765) overnighted to Chicago

05-23-14: (Day 01) - Package delivered and signed for by J.C.

05-30-14: (Day 08) - Email/text notifications received at 12:24am

06-05-14: (Day 14) - NOAs received in the mail

06-07-14: (Day 16) - Biometrics appointment received in the mail

06-20-14: (Day 29) - Biometrics complete as scheduled

06-26-14: (Day 35) - Received text that I-485 was moved to "Testing and Interview" stage

08-12-14: (Day 82) - EAD/AP card in production

08-20-14: (Day 90) - EAD/AP card arrived

08-27-14: (Day 97) - Received email for interview October 3rd

08-29-14: (Day 99) - NOA2 for interview received in the mail

10-03-14: (Day 134) - Interview at Federal Plaza - APPROVED! Card in Production email 20 minutes later!

10-09-14: (Day 140) - Received email that card was mailed

10-10-14: (Day 141) - Green card, Welcome to the US notice, and approval of I-130 received in the mail

ROC

08-02-16: Mailed ROC package to VSC

08-09-16: Check cashed

08-12-16: Received NOA dated 8-5

08-26-16: Received biometrics appointment for 9/8/16

07-13-17: New card is being produced!

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