Q: Can a friend live with me while overstaying her visa with a pending exchange/extension in progress?
I have a friend who is here on a Q1 Visa. Due to the virus, she lost her job and is experiencing a hardship and cannot return home. And given the current situation, travel is not advised. I helped her file an exchange of status from Q1 to B2. Unfortunately we did this 5 weeks into an overstay for her. She is in need of housing. Given that she overstayed, can she legally stay with me while her exchange of status is pending with immigration services?
A: Why not? There seems to be extreme confusion. The concept of harboring an alien, at law, is terribly misunderstood by the American public! You are allowed to support a friend in her effort to change status.
She filed late, but in doing she may have challenges that were left unexplained to the satisfaction of USCIS. It may still be granted, that is unclear.
Others, who are present, may be eligible for relief, but have delayed doing so. This could be due to the extreme paperwork and costs required just to become a conditional resident after marrying a U. S. citizen!
Again, if there is any fear or misunderstanding of the law, then don’t do it yourself. It may lead to denial and other severe consequences to an immigration or visa record.
As a result, I strongly recommend an appointment with a competent and experienced immigration attorney before there are any other complications.
The above is general information, not legal advice, and does not create an attorney client relationship.
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