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Just got married. Am I filing the right forms?

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  • Just got married. Am I filing the right forms?

    I'm a USC. Got married to my longitme gf on 10/20/07. She's a PR of China citizen and came here legally on an F1, finished school and through OJP, got an H1B sponsor. She's never been out of status. Tomorrow we plan to mail in:

    I-130 with biometric app.
    I-485

    Is that right? We live in VA, so we apply at the St. Albans, VT location. But USCIS has a pretty big office right next to our house in Fairfax. I assume that's where we'd appear for any interview, correct? One of the forms asks where we're applying? Obviously, if USCIS receives the form, they know where we sent it. Or does the form mean where we'll be appearing in person?

    Also, is conditional perm. residence status granted as soon as they process these two applications? We're in no hurry, except that my job will soon send me to live in AZ and my wife will have to quit her job (aka H1B) sponsor to come with me. I want her to be able to find work in AZ as soon as we get there. Thanks for your help.

  • #2
    it used to be that if I-130 and I-485 are filed at the same time, they were sent to Chicago. I haven't heard that has changed so double check the mailing instructions.

    The conditional PR status is granted after the interview if you two have been married less than 2 years at that time. For her to be able to work while the applications are pending, include I-756 for Employment authorisation document. To leave the USA during that period, she will need Advance Parole, form I-131.

    Don't forget Affidavit of support I-864.

    When do you think you'll move?

    Comment


    • #3
      Thanks! We want to move by the end of January, but will probably keep our VA residency for a while and come back often for business. The instructions for the I-130 say for VA folks to mail their stuff to VT. Pretty sure of that. And the advance parole instructions sound like advance parole is only for real emergencies and is otherwise not needed. I was under the impression that conditional status was granted immediately upon receipt/processing of the I-130, but that the interview came way later or sooner if USCIS had any suspicions as to the legitimacy of the marriage. We do need to go to China in early 2008 for a few weeks for family stuff. Top priority now though is getting her legal to work anywhere and not just for another H1 sponsor.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Rick Lee:
        The instructions for the I-130 say for VA folks to mail their stuff to VT. Pretty sure of that. .
        Yes, they do, but you need to read everything. Page 3 of the instructions, at the bottom:
        NOTE: If the Form I-130 petition is being filed concurrently with Form I-485, Application to Register PermanentResidence or Adjust Status, submit both forms concurrently to
        U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services P.O. Box 805887Chicago, IL 60680-4120
        And the advance parole instructions sound like advance parole is only for real emergencies and is otherwise not needed..
        yes, they do, but in reality people use it for all kinds of trips. If she leaves the USA without the AP after filing I-130/I-485, her petition will be considered abandoned. That means she will have to stay outside the USA while the papers are processed for an immigrant visa.
        I was under the impression that conditional status was granted immediately upon receipt/processing of the I-130, but that the interview came way later or sooner if USCIS had any suspicions as to the legitimacy of the marriage.
        She will stay in H status (providing it is valid and other conditions are met) after filing the papers. That will change if she starts using Employment AD, then she'll be in "pending adjustment status". Interview is a must. A small number is approved without the interview.

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        • #5
          Ok, glad you set me straight. I'll go through everything again tonight. I had printed out a form for advance parole, but was unsure of whether to file it. Is it good for one or two entries? And do you know how long we can expect to wait for any of this stuff to happen?

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          • #6
            AP can be good for one or more entries. (I think there is a question what she wants).

            Your wife should get AP and EAD within 90 days from filing all the papers. How long to the interview depends on your local office, if there are any other delays (request for additional info), how long it will take for name/background check..... Change of address may also delay everything.

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