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Is there a faster way to obtain a green card?

I am a mainland born Chinese. I filed my I-526 in June 2016 and it was approved in March. I am hoping to get my green card soon. Is there any fast route for me, like staying in China and waiting for consular processing? Or can I come to the U.S. on an F-1 visa and file I-485 to adjust my status?

Answers

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    Daniel A Zeft

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Based on the facts presented, there is no way for you to become a U.S. permanent resident quickly.

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    A Olusanjo Omoniyi

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    There is no faster way or expedited processing to obtain a green card regardless of the country of origin of the applicant. In this case, moving to the U.S. on F-1 would not speed up the process for you.

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    Julia Roussinova

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Chinese mainland-born nationals are facing a long wait line to be issued an immigrant visa based on approved I-526 petition. It may be very difficult for you to obtain an F-1 visa because you have already demonstrated immigrant intent and have I-526 immigrant petition approved, which must be disclosed in DS-160 form to avoid misrepresentation issues. Consider a dual-intent visa, such as L-1, if eligible.

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    Fredrick W Voigtmann

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Chinese investors who filed after 2014 have a long wait ahead of them. Awaiting immigrant visa processing or coming to the United States as an F-1 student, which will not allow for I-485 adjustment of status unless or until there is a current priority date, will not make the waiting time go faster. You should consult with an experienced immigration attorney who may be able to recommend some alternatives that might be faster, or at least give you the peace of mind that you are not missing any opportunity for a faster route.

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    Stephen Berman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    If you are not in the U.S., it would be very, very hard to get a non-immigrant visa to come to the U.S. while you are waiting for the visa to be available. But it is possible. Better would be an H-1B or L-1 if you are eligible.

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    Lynne Feldman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You may come to the U.S. on any non-immigrant status you qualify for such, as F-1. (There may be a conflicting intent, though.) And then adjust status. No magic formula to expedite. You are in a queue and it is slow.

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    Jinhee Wilde

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Because you already have an I-526 approval, getting an F-1 visa, which is a non-immigrant intent visa, will be very difficult. The consulate officer will ask you if you have an immigrant intent or have an immigration petition or visa filed. If you tell them that you want to get the F-1 visa and then adjust your status, your F-1 will not be approved. If you do not tell them that you have an immigrant intent, then you will be lying to the consulate officer, which will make you forever inadmissible for misrepresentation. Thus, while you may want to come into U.S. faster, I would advise you to be patient.

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    Belma Chinchoy

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The difference in consular vs. adjustment process is negligible. The holdup in your case is the backlog of visa priority dates. Once your visa priority date becomes current, you will have your conditional green card within six to 10 months. If you have a legitimate reason to apply for an F-1 visa, go for it, but make sure you discuss the process with an attorney to avoid a possible misrepresentation on your application.

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    BoBi Ahn

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Consular processing (depending on the backlogs at consulate) may be slightly faster when it is time for you process for the immigrant visa vs. filing for adjustment in the U.S. You may be able to enter on an F-1 visa to attend school if you can demonstrate that your present intent is to attend school and depart, but having an approved I-526 may pose an immigrant intent red flag.

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    Dale Schwartz

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You could come her on a student visa and hope your priority date becomes current before you finish school.

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    Bernard P Wolfsdorf

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Staying in China will not speed up your case. You may be able to come on a student visa if you can show you have no intention to stay on the F-1. This is hard since you have an approved I-526. Sadly, the waiting line is moving very slowly but that may help you to get a student visa, as you can prove a long wait and therefore you immediate intent may not be to stay. Regarding the China waiting line, we hope that current litigation to allow 10,000 investors, as opposed to the current 3,0000 investors and their families, succeeds. The only other option to shorten your waiting line is if you had a legitimate marriage to a foreign national from another chargeability area, such as Hong Kong, Taiwan or even Macau.

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    Salvatore Picataggio

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Well, since you may have just admitted you plan on entering the U.S. temporarily (F-1) with the intent to apply for a green card (I-485), don't do that. That's fraud. Right now, mainland Chinese applicants have to wait up to four years for a visa number to be available and move forward with applying for a green card. Unless the Department of State moves the numbers up, there's really no other way unless you find a different immigrant petition that has a shorter visa wait time.

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    Charles Foster

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The fact that you were born in mainland China means that you are subject to the quota for China, for which there is a significant backlog. That would apply whether you intend to apply for your immigrant visa in China or whether you are in valid status in the U.S. You cannot adjust your status in the U.S. until a visa number is available. While you may be able to obtain an F-1 student visa and be admitted to the United States in F-1 non-immigrant status, you would have to disclose on your application that you have filed an EB-5 investor petition and, similarly, if asked when you seek admission, you should be very clear that you have filed an EB-5 petition and that you have an interim intent to study and ultimately return to China given the lengthy backlog for Chinese nationals under the EB-5 program.

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