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How can I stay in the U.S. with an approved I-526 and an expired F-1 visa?

I am an EB-5 investor from Vietnam. I have an approved I-526 but I am still waiting for my priority date to become current. My F-1 visa and I-20 will expire in 8 months. After these documents expire, can I stay in the U.S. since I have an approved I-526?

Answers

  • Avatar

    Salvatore Picataggio

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Unless you re-up your studies, only filing an I-485 could keep you in the U.S., which requires a current priority date.

  • Avatar

    Bernard P Wolfsdorf

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    No, the approval of the I-526 does not allow you to stay in the U.S. You will have to obtain status via a different category.

  • Avatar

    Stephen Berman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Change status.

  • Avatar

    Mark AM Catam, Esq

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Unfortunately, the approved I-526 does not give you any lawful status.

  • Avatar

    Marko Issever

    EB-5 Broker Dealer
    Answered on

    No, you cannot. Unfortunately, you need a valid visa at all times to stay in the U.S. That is because an approved I-526 that cannot be followed by adjustment of status, due to retrogression, will not help you. That said, you have many options. Before your F-1 visa expires, if you have not used your optional practical training (OPT) right yet, try to get a job and use the OPT. If not, as long as you continue your studies and get another I-20 from another school, your visa will be renewed and you will not be out of status.

  • Avatar

    Vaughan de Kirby

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    No, unfortunately your approved I-526 will not provide you with valid immigration status. I suggest you consider expanding your education goals to obtain a new I-20. Make an appointment with your university foreign student advisor who may be able to advise you on the best path to remain in status. You should also consult with a qualified immigration attorney.

  • Avatar

    Charles Foster

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Only if you maintain your valid non-immigrant status. You could extend your F-1 status before your OPT status by continuing your education or change to other viable non-immigrant status, but it may be difficult.

  • Avatar

    Julia Roussinova

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You have to maintain an underlying non-immigrant status to be able to adjust status in the U.S. when your I-526 petition priority date becomes current. Approved I-526 petition does not give you any status nor employment authorization. If you fall out of status, you will not be able to adjust and will start accruing unlawful presence. Continue going to school full-time or consider other options, such as the H-1B visa, etc.

  • Avatar

    A Olusanjo Omoniyi

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You can't stay in the U.S. with an expired F-1 visa even though your I-526 petition has been approved. Otherwise, you will be deemed to be out of status and it may negatively impact your EB-5 petition.

  • Avatar

    Hassan Elkhalil

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Get a new I-120 and continue to study until the priority date is current. You may also consider the OPT or change to B-1/B-2 visa!

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