If I’ve lived in the US for 5 calendar years and received 2 MS degrees from prestigious US graduate schools, can I apply for a green card right now?

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If I’ve lived in the US for 5 calendar years and received 2 MS degrees from prestigious US graduate schools, can I apply for a green card right now?

I am presently working on F-1 OPT status. My employer will sponsor a J1 visa and I would rather have a GC in progress than a J1 position. Can I apply for GC, if yes then what form/eligibility should I apply under as my employer will not support it. If I am on J1 visa status next year and want to go back to school on F1 visa status in 2 years, do I have to go home and complete the 2-year mandatory requirement to stay in the home country?

Asked on October 17, 2013 under Immigration Law, Georgia

Answers:

SB, Member, California / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

If you are subject to the 2 year home residency requirement as part of your J-1, then you have to either get a waiver of it or satisfy it before you file for any type of permanent residence petition.  Secondly, even once you do, you are not eligible for any self-sponsored peittions just because you have a MS degree or even 2.  If you are not an alien of extraordinary ability (and very few people qualify for that), you would have to be petitioned, by this employer or another for a green card.


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