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Immigration/ Adjustment of Status/ Employment without authorization

Brooklyn, NY |

I am filing an application to get a green card through my US citizen husband. I do not have an employment authorization, but I was working the entire time and filed income tax returns. My husband occasionally filed tax returns. However, this year he didn't show any income. Also,we have a cosponsor. How can I explain at the interview that I was working without authorization? Should I fill out any additional forms explaining it? Is there any penalty for this? What is the better way to solve this situation?

Attorney Answers 4


  1. You explain it in the same way as here - truthfully and in honest and straightforward language.

    The information contained in this answer is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject matter,not should it be viewed as establishing an attorney client relationship of any kind.


  2. Be truthful on the application and at the interview. While there is a general prohibition to adjusting status if you have worked illegally in the US, there is an exception if you are adjusting based on marriage to a US citizen. No additional forms are needed. There is no penalty unless you used fake documents to work.

    The answer provided here is general in nature and does not take into account other factors that may need to be reviewed for a more precise answer. You should consult with an immigration attorney before taking any action. The answer here is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship.


  3. Unauthorized employment is forgiven if you're married to a US citizen. There is neither a penalty nor additional forms.


  4. Just be truthful and disclose all your previous unauthorized employment. I have good news for you: spouses of US citizens can never be penalized for any on authorized employments, due to the fact that they are deemed as "immediate relatives" (IRs). The law as it stands does not allow USCIS is to penalize IRs for any previous unauthorized employment. Rest assured.

    Kindly be advised that the answer above is only general in nature cannot be construed as legal advice, given that not enough facts are known. It is your responsibility to retain a lawyer to analyze the facts specific to your particular situation in order to give you specific advice. Specific answers will require cognizance of all pertinent facts about your case. Any answers offered on Avvo are of a general nature only, and are not meant to create an attorney-client relationship.

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