Can I change from a nonimmigrant to immigrant visa while in the USA? 4 Answers as of December 08, 2010

I have an I visa that expires in 6 months. I have been in the USA about 1.5 years. I want to stay and start on the path to citizenship. Can I change to an immigrant visa while here, or will I have to leave to do that?

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Pacifica Legal Services
Pacifica Legal Services | Floyd Fernandez
I have your question, and I apologize for answering so late. Yes, you can change from a non-immigrant to immigrant visa while in the country, at least in most cases.(An exception is a B-1/B-2 travel visa cannot adjust status from that to a green card). That is especially so in the case of someone who is here on either an H-1B work visa or a F-1 student visa. However, I would have to know a lot more about your case, especially the kind of visa you now have, and how it is you waited until less than six months before your visa ran out. In many instances, you either cannot stay in the country while your non-immigrant expires, and your green card application is pending, unless you get a waiver, but in many cases, leaving once you overstay is even worse. At any rate, if you would like additional help, please feel free to e-mail or call, and I will set up a consultation with you. Best to you.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 12/8/2010
Law Offices of Svetlana Boukhny
Law Offices of Svetlana Boukhny | Svetlana Boukhny
You need to either have an approved family based petition or employment based petition in order to be able to adjust status from nonimmigrant status to permanent residence.

Please let me know if you have any additional questions or how I can be of further assistance to you in this matter.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 11/17/2010
JCS Immigration & Visa Law Office
JCS Immigration & Visa Law Office | Jack C. Sung
You can change to immigrant visa in the US, for example, if you marry a US citizen.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 11/17/2010
Law Office of Michael E. Hendrickson
Law Office of Michael E. Hendrickson | Michael E. Hendrickson
Your sponsor for lawful permanent residency should be able to file for your adjustment of status while you are still here in the United States.
Answer Applies to: Virginia
Replied: 11/16/2010
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