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  • Green Card without marriage?

    I've been studying and working legally in the US for 9 years. I had the J1, F1, OPT and H1B for 4.5 years. I cannot find any employer to sponsor me anymore (education field)and even if I do, I only have a year and a half left on my H1B. To be able to stay legally I had to become a student again and am currently under an F1.
    What is next for me? how can I get a green card without getting married or without a sponsor? is that the end for me? please help I'm desperate, thank you . Sarah

  • #2
    I've been studying and working legally in the US for 9 years. I had the J1, F1, OPT and H1B for 4.5 years. I cannot find any employer to sponsor me anymore (education field)and even if I do, I only have a year and a half left on my H1B. To be able to stay legally I had to become a student again and am currently under an F1.
    What is next for me? how can I get a green card without getting married or without a sponsor? is that the end for me? please help I'm desperate, thank you . Sarah

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    • #3
      Not much left, unless you're outstanding in your
      field and can self-sponsor or have the money to get an investor's visa.

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      • #4
        Make sure you keep your status and visa valid. The best route to legalization is to marry a US citizen. Go and find a fiance ASAP.

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        • #5
          Sarah, your best bet is to try to find an employer willing to sponsor you under EB3 or EB2 (if you qualify), and do it soonest you can, while still under F-1.

          IE

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          • #6
            If you want to find a sponsor/to work for,the employer MUST proof,no american that is available to the same job is unable to do.
            But lots of employers would not really sponsor you,unless you have good relationship with them and they like you etc and they would be willing to sponsor you due to your ability.
            But just another employer wouldn't sponsor you,and most of the time.YOU personally have to pay all the application fee's etc.

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            • #7
              AliBA is correct. I did the investor visa for over seven years (about 100k investment into a US company using E-2 Visa) and then did the self-sponsor EB-1a visa. (direct to green card) NO marriage and NO labor cert!! (thank g-o-d)

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              • #8
                Hey jeff can you please explain what you did further? Did you do a one time investment of 100k or 100k every year for 7 years? Your response is greatly appreciated

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                • #9
                  K_Solomon - It was a one time investment of $95k into a US company (small business, partner is US citizen) with 51% ownership. I obtained an E-2 Visa and had to go to the US Embassey in Toronto to get it. For the renewal, five years later, it can be done through the mail. With the E-2 visa you have to leave the country every two years, just to cross the border and then back in, (to get a new white I-94 card) then renew the full visa every five years. You do not need to re-invest any more money to re-new the visa. The E-2 visa DOES NOT lead to green card.

                  This is how I got my green card (green card received on September 30, 2005), and my first post on this board:

                  This post is just to tell the long process of what I went through to get my green card. In 1996 I was hired from Canada to a company in Texas as a consultant. A small business. Not knowing squat about the immigration process. My first visa was a TN consulatant visa (probably the worst of all work visas) This visa is for consulting and is only good for a year, however, it is renewable in one year incriments (sp). One of the difficult requirements when holding this visa is you have to keep a residence in your home country, while (temp) living in the US. Also, as per the nature of consulting, you can only do so much until "consulting" is done. Basically telling a company how it should opporate, as was my job. I did this for two years on this visa, and yes had a very good, however very expensive immigration lawyer.

                  During these two years, I saved every (extra) penny I made. At the end of two years the owner asked me if I wanted to buy half the company and be partners. Thought about it, went back to my expensive lawyer and found the visa I would need, which in my case was the E-2 visa (invester visa) This was very expensive. I took the $95,000.00 I saved over the two years and invested it in the company, thus giving me half the company. The E-2 Visa is good for 5 years, however you have to leave the country every 2 years, basically just to cross the boarder, check in, get a new white I-94 card, which I did. This E-2 Visa does not lead to green card, it is just a temporary resident visa, but I had no other options, as I did not qualify for any other visa. So I figured I was stuck and would just have to live on this visa forever.

                  Years went by, lots of travel to keep my I-94 current, flights, hotels etc. it gets expensive. Anyway, years went by, and it was time to renew the E-2 Visa. Did that, again, had to hire lawyer to make it happen, give them lots of paperwork to show the company is still around and making money, paying taxes...etc. Anyway, during these years, my company won several awards, national, regional and local for our work, also, numerous articles in mags, newspapers, both local and national, even a spot on ABC World News. So during these years, I kept every single article, trophy, mag, ...just everything, basically so in my old age, could look back at it all and think, "cool".

                  During my last E-2 renewal, I asked my lawyer if there was any other visa I'd qualify for, cause i was tired of living as a temporary resident. Turns out I qualified for the EB-1 visa (alien with extraordinary abilities) ---This is not an easy Visa to get as the qualifications are extreme. But with all the national awards and recognition I (we, partner and I) received, he thought I'd qualify. So, I paid him the $18,000.00 to start the paperwork on this visa. (expensive, I know) Then I gave him copies of everything, awards etc. 9 years of stuff, and it was a large box of it. Anyway, I applied for this Visa and Green Card at the same time, lawyer said it should take about two years, if I applied for them separately it could take three years.

                  Long storey short, from the time I applied for this visa and green card, it actually took only 6 WEEKS !! My lawyer was stunned, so was I. SIX WEEKS !! Apparently there are not alot of people that qualify for this visa so the paperwork the immigration people that handle this visa was only minimal. So, after 9 years and 27 days of working / living in the US (LEGALLY) I finally got my green card a month ago. Also, fyi, thanks to MS Money and Quickbooks, I looked to see how much money I spent on all of this immigration, visas, lawyers, travel, investment etc. the total came to $179,000.00. Yes 95k of that went to invest in the company, but I still had to pay that, then the next large chunk went to the lawyers. Yes immigration lawyers are very expensive, but they can figure it out and make it happen. I would never suggest doing your immigration work by yourself, one mess up or missed date can cost you your residencey. If you had a water leak, you wouldn't fix it yourself, you'd call a plumber, if you had an electrical problem, you wouldn't fix it yourself, you'd call an electrician, and if you are dealing with immigration matters, hire an immigration lawyer. Anyway, finally after all these years, I don't have to deal with this anymore...at least till Naturalization time...in five years.

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                  • #10
                    What an IDIOT!!!!! $179,000??? I want to know what kind of bad canabis sativa you've been smoking. You could have taken that to your country and make a difference in the life of your country-folk, TRAITOR!!!!!

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                    • #11
                      congratulation Jeff for everything. your story is a great inspiration to so many of us. keep up the good work.

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                      • #12
                        " What an IDIOT!!!!! $179,000??? I want to know what kind of bad canabis sativa you've been smoking. You could have taken that to your country and make a difference in the life of your country-folk, TRAITOR!!!!! "

                        --179k was an investment sht for brains, I make well over 100k a year now. Also, my birth country is Canada, not a third world country. Canadians (my "country-folk") have plenty of money to buy beer and kraft dinner.

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                        • #13
                          Very good, jeff.
                          Congrats.

                          Two questions:

                          1. Is the investment for E non-immigrant visa thAt low, US$100.000? (This sounds probable, I am just curious)

                          2. How could you buy 51% of shares at such a low cost, assuming the company was doing well enough (profitwise) to get publicity and pay you good salary (must have paid you well, or else how would you save up $100.000 in two years , on top of paying for your lawyer and living expenses? --> [quote, jeff]My first visa was a TN..I did this for two years on this visa..During these two years, I saved every (extra) penny I made. [/quote])


                          Regards,

                          IE

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                          • #14
                            Thank you Jeff. I knew it had to be a great story. When i read your story, i realized how much some of us wants opportunities to just drop down on us.

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                            • #15
                              I am still very curious how Jeff was able to get 51% share in company that was profitable enough to pay him 100K extra (savings made by employee in two years above all other living expenses) in two years.
                              He must have been paid over 100K A YEAR to save 50Ks ( Salary = net pay + taxes, where net pay = living cost + exp. attorney + 50K savings).

                              So, how much revenue did company have - to afford hiring him?
                              And certainly, as a successful company/business, it must have been sufficiently profitable too.

                              So, how does one buy a 51% share of company like that for 100K ?
                              I think a lot of investors would love to know where to find shares of company like that at such cost.

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