For Individuals Who Want To Come And Stay In The U.S.
Investigating Others’ Cases When Applying for Your Own Benefit
What if USCIS is using my interview to find out information from other cases? Hi, I’m Jim Hacking, immigration lawyer, practicing law throughout the United States at our office here in St. Louis, Missouri. I have been to a series of green card interviews and naturalization interviews, usually where the person was previously on an H1B. And there’s not a doubt in my mind that USCIS is using interviews, now, in 2020 and 2021 to go back and look at the H1B practices of employers. So, we are seeing time and time again people’s citizenship cases and their green card cases get delayed because of the details surrounding how they got their H1B, what practices the employer used. And we’re really seeing them, what I would consider, during discovery. They’re doing investigations into H1B employers by asking questions during a naturalization interview and during a green card interview. So, I first started seeing this happen down in Orlando with a client who had actually built and sold several H1B companies. And this really seems to be one of the common factors.
So, if you’ve built an H1B company or sold one or worked for one that got bought and sold, we’re really seeing more and more USCIS is spending a lot of time at interviews. We’ve heard of interviews, and many interviews that were hours and hours long, where the question of whether the immigrant gets the benefit for naturalization or for the green card is sort of secondary to all the questions that are being asked about how you got your visa, what was going on at the employer, whether they were an H1B abuser or someone who wasn’t following all the rules and regulations when it came to H1Bs. And if you find yourself in an interview like that, and you are not the employer, then you should be very… I mean, you should always be honest with USCIS, but unless you’re putting yourself into some kind of criminal trouble, you need to be honest about that, because they can hold that naturalization or green card over your head. Now, if it gets uncomfortable and they’re asking things that you did that may have been criminal, you might want to stop the interview.
So, this is a great reason why, if you were in the United States and are applying for a green card or for citizenship, and you were previously on an H1B with a, what I would call, questionable company, you can anticipate getting questions about this. And it’s probably a really good reason why you should bring an immigration lawyer to your interview. So, this video isn’t going to apply to everybody, but it’s one of those tricks that USCIS is using to figure out whether or not people are following all the rules.
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