Bellevue, WA asked in Immigration Law and Federal Crimes for Washington

Q: Seek for help that OPT/OPT extension under security check by USCIS (processed more than 8 months)

On Dec 23rd, 2020, my friends and I traveled to Alaska for fun, but the driver accidentally drove into the military base. As the passengers, we cannot control our ability, but all were arrested and issued Penalty Violations of Security & Orders. We're dismissed without prejudice at the same date when the ticket became valid and have all of the evidence that can prove we just plan to have fun, arrest record, dismiss record. We did nothing wrong...

We're applying for OPT/OPT extension for now. We've tried congressman, inquiry, but none of them work. We're under security check (probably FBI name check). I know there is no way to expedite it, but we're about to lose jobs since it's OPT. We don't have much time to wait for it. One attorney suggested filing a motion based on a previous group OPT delayed mandamus case, but we might not be sure about it. We're also considering filing a new writ of mandamus, but it might be denied and take a long time. Seek urgent help, please...

1 Lawyer Answer
Kevin L Dixler
Kevin L Dixler
  • Immigration Law Lawyer
  • Milwaukee, WI

A: This is unfortunate, but a mistake was made by your irresponsible friend. Now, the USCIS seems unwilling to devote time to reasonably adjudicate the EAD OPT applications. I suspect that no action will be taken any time soon. You really ought to hire experienced counsel, not dabble with a pro se filing!

A writ of mandamus against USCIS can prove complicated and may even lead to sanctions. It can be easily dismissed by a Federal Court, even if an attorney files it. There should be enough of a demonstration of a breach of an adjudicator's duty of care, as a matter of law, to seek resolution without dismissal or trial. It can also prove too costly for some, especially if the immigration attorney knows what they are doing and what can happen. Yet, these writs have been filed electronically and successfully negotiated over the phone.

Once properly filed with a well drafted plea, only then can there be negotiation! If you are unprepared, nor can afford to litigate in Federal Court, then you ought to consider your work options, elsewhere. I regret that this may not be what you wanted to hear, but I wish you good luck.

The above is general information, not legal advice, and does not create an attorney client relationship.

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