Q: Currently applying for NIW GC. Can I change from H1B to F1 and still wait for my GC or I have to be on H1.
I am currently in the process of applying for my GC through the NIW category. I am currently on H1. I am really interested in pursuing a course that needs to be full time. Hence I need to convert to F1 in future. Can my GC application still be valid if I change status or do I have to remain on H1 till my GC is approved?
Also, Can I change status when my I140 is approved or I cannot do it at all.
A: Unfortunately, changing to F-1 while a green card case is pending is not allowed. F-1 status requires "nonimmigrant intent", i.e. intention to return to one's country after the completion of studies and not to remain in the US permanently. Applying for or being sponsored for a green card negates "nonimmigrant intent" and therefore disqualifies the person for F-1.
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