Can my family with green cards sponsor me if I overstayed my J1 visa? 1 Answers as of June 23, 2011

I’ve been in the US since 2000 when I arrived on A J1 visa ( without two year restriction). I overstayed what makes now almost 11 years. My mother and my sisters are all green card holders. One of my sisters is about to file for citizenship. I’ve been getting a very mixed information as to I can be sponsored by them or not. The problem obviously being that I overstayed, but also that I’m 35 year old. There are lawyers that told me that I could not file a sponsorship petition, and there are lawyers that tell me that I should have filed that years ago. I’m not sure what the truth really is. Also I’ve been told by some that I may have grounds to fight the 10 year bar I’ll get if I leave the country. I’m not sure how or it that is even true. So my question is practically, can I file a sponsorship petition based on my family? Is it better for me to leave US while the petition is being filed? Is it better to stay? Can I ever fight the 10 years bar that would automatically apply to me if I leave? Your help would be greatly appreciated. Best regards.

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World Esquire Law Firm | Aime Katambwe
Yes you can always be sponsored by your USC relatives (LPR sponsorship from your mother will not help you much) but the question is when will the visa become available for processing. At the least, your mother should try to get citizenship and if some movement with the visas in the 3rd category happens, then you will have a shot. . . a long shot. In your category as an overstayer, if you were to become your USC's immediate relative, then the law will permit you to adjust your status without more. Maybe you should look into this and get on with it. Of course, nothing prevents you from actually leaving the US and completing consular processing in your country of origin. There will be no way around the 10-year bar but with a waiver at the appropriate time. I think you have all the information you will need on the issue, having been here for over 11 years. Good luck!
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 6/23/2011
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