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How can I file an I-765 and I-526 application at the same time?

I have received differing opinions from lawyers on this issue. I am currently in F-1 status, graduating this May. Right now, I am filing Form I-765 to get my student Optional Practice Training. However, I am also contacting regional centers for EB-5 opportunities. I will likely file an I-526 application in two weeks. Will the I-526 application impede my OPT (I-765) application? Some lawyers said it would. How should I coordinate the application timelines, considering that USCIS usually takes 60 days to process the I-765 application?

Answers

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    Julia Roussinova

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You should coordinate staying in status in the United States if you wish to adjust status in the United States when your I-526 is approved, as current processing times for the I-526 are 14.2 months.

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    Fredrick W Voigtmann

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The I-526 might affect the I-765. The I-765 will have zero effect on the I-526. You should consult with an immigration attorney who can advise you on the timing of these applications.

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    John J Downey

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    I would process the OPT first and get my status in order. You can wait to apply for EB-5.

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    Louis M Piscopo

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    I do not see why the filing of the I-765 would be impeded by filing an I-526 since they are independent of one another.

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    J Bruce Weinman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    An I-526 petition has nothing to do with your OPT or with the I-765. The time-frame of when to file the I-526 with respect to when you file the I-765 is irrelevant. But, if you are still looking at regional center investment opportunities, it is unlikely that you will be filing the I-526 petition in two weeks, unless you have already started working with an immigration lawyer on the source of funds memorandum. What you should be concerned with is staying in status after your OPT expires. You have one year of OPT - the I-526 petitions for regional centers are taking over a year to process (12-18 months); if you want to stay in the United States and file for adjustment of status (as opposed to departing and then applying for the visa through consular processing), you will have to remain in status until the I-526 has been approved - which will be up to six months after your F-1/OPT expires, before you can file for adjustment of status.

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    Salvatore Picataggio

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The F-1 is one status that allows for a concurrent EB-5 process. It may still be appropriate, however, to wait for your OPT to begin before moving forward with EB-5, but we would need to discuss the specifics of your case and timelines.

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    Stephen Berman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Filing an I-526 will not impede an application for a work permit based on OPT.

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