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I have overstayed my H1B visa. What are my options if I still want to live and work in the US?

Quincy, MA |

I came to the US in 2004 on an F1 visa. I was accompanied by my wife and child (F2 visas, my son was 2). After I graduated in 2008 I took on a 2-year scientific research position (H1B; H4 for my wife and son). Since the completion of those 2 years I have been unemployed. My wife is also unemployed. I haven't filed any immigration petitions. I have 3 children two of whom are US citizens. My children are 10, 7, and 2. My 10-year old child is currently a fifth grader. I would like to know my options if I still want to live and work in the US. At the very least I want to legalize my family's status. Thank you.

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Attorney answers 3


You might have options if you were able to obtain a job offer and the employer is willing to sponsor you for another H1B visa. However, please note that because you are out of status, any petition you file with the U.S. Immigration Service could result in your being placed in Deportation proceedings. If placed in Deportation, you could file a Petition for Cancellation of Removal based on extreme hardship to your U.S. citizen children; and depending on your circumstances, you could be granted a green card. On the other hand, it could be denied and you would be deported. I recommend that you meet with an immigration lawyer in person or over the phone to provide more details and get the case properly evaluated.

You should not file any paperwork with the U.S. Immigration Service alone under these circumstances. Please obtain an experienced immigration lawyer to help you.

Best of luck to you.

Nikiki T. Bogle, Esq.
Bogle & Chang, LLC
Immigration Lawyer
Phone: (800) 342-1733 ext. 101


Right now, I don't see any options for you. You may benefit if there is comprehensive immigration reform in 2013. If not, perhaps cancellation of removal.

Please click the link below for additional information.

Carl Shusterman, Esq.
Former INS Trial Attorney (1976-82)
Board Certified Immigration Attorney (1986 - Present)
Subscribe to our Free Immigration Newsletter
600 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 1550
Los Angeles, CA 90017
(213) 394-4554 x0
Web: (English) (Spanish)

(213) 394-4554 x0 Mr. Shusterman is a former INS Trial Attorney (1976-82) with over 35 years of immigration experience. His response to your question is general in nature, as not all the facts are known to him. You should retain an attorney experienced in immigration law to review all the facts in your case in order to receive advice specific to your case. Mr. Shusterman's statement above does not create an attorney/client relationship.

Robert Winford Carpenter

Robert Winford Carpenter


Because you have overstayed even if you got a visa under current law you would not be eligible to adjust your status.


None on the facts you give.

J Charles Ferrari Eng & Nishimura 213.622.2255 The statement above is general in nature and does not constitute legal advice, as not all the facts are known. You should retain an attorney to review all the facts specific to your case in order to receive advise specific to your case. The statement above does not create an attorney/client relationship. Answers on Avvo can only be general ones, as specific answers would require knowledge of all the facts. As such, they may or may not apply to the question.

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