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Question
Dear lawyer,

 My mother who is a citizen filed I130 for me in 2003. I entered US in 2002 using H1 visa. My H1 visa was expired in 2004 and I was not able to go back to my country due to sickness. Since then I stayed in US illegally. The I130 was approved and the priority date is current now. I would like to know if I can apply for green card without leaving the country. I am afraid if I leave the country I will be banned from entry since I stayed illegally. There seems to be no viable option for me now. I am very worried and not sure what to do. Any input will be greatly appreciated.
Thank you very much for your help.

sincerely,
Cathy J

Answer
Hi,

As your mother sponsored you after April 30, 2001, you are not covered under sec. 245(i). Thus, you will be unable to adjust status in the U.S. as you are currently violating the terms of your nonimmigrant visa category (H visa category).

If you depart the U.S., you will be barred from entering the U.S. for 10 years.

If you continue to remain in the U.S., you may be able to adjust status in the future if sec. 245(i) is extended in the future. We cannot predict if and when sec. 245(i) will be extended in the future, or what terms of relief may apply in the future.

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Ajay K. Arora

Expertise

I can answer your questions on employment and family-based U.S. Immigration Law. Expertise in various immigration categories includes the following: H-1B, L-1, O-1, PERM (labor certification), EB-1 to EB-3 I-140 employment-based immigrant petitions, family or fiance(e) or spousal sponsorship, visa extension or change of status, adjustment of status, naturalization (citizenship), etc.

Experience

Ajay K. Arora attended Pennsylvania State University and the University of Wales at Swansea (United Kingdom), and earned his law degree at Temple University School of Law, Philadelphia, in 1993. Mr. Arora has practiced Immigration Law since graduation and is a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association since 1995.

Organizations
American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) full member since 1995.

Education/Credentials
Ajay K. Arora attended Pennsylvania State University and the University of Wales at Swansea (United Kingdom), and earned his law degree at Temple University School of Law, Philadelphia, in 1993. Mr. Arora has practiced Immigration Law since graduation and is a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association since 1995.

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