Shah & Hasan

By: Hasan Abdullah, Esq.

I entered the country on a B1/B2 visitor visa, can I safely adjust status? This is a very common question, and a source of a lot of confusion, even amongst immigration practitioners, USCIS officers, and Consular Officers (AKA ConOffs). The answer, like most things in immigration, is “maybe.”

As many people know, a B1/B2 visitor visa is not a dual intent visa. In other words, you should only have the intent to stay as a visitor and not to immigrate when you get the visa. If a ConOff interviewing you for the visa asks you whether you have intent to immigrate or if you have a US Citizen fiancé in the US, etc, and you say that you do have a fiancé and intend to get married and immigrate, you will not get the visa.

With the above considerations in mind, it is important to also understand the issues of preconceived intent (PCI) and fraud. The basic guideline is that PCI is not an inadmissibility bar, but fraudulent misrepresentation (INA 212(a)(6)(C)(i)) is. So even if you had, in your heart, preconceived intent, if you were never questioned about it, and you never stated anything untrue to a ConOff or Port of Entry Officer, nor made any misstatements in your DS (department of state) forms when they were filled, then you are legally good to adjust status.

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Shah Peerally is an attorney licensed in California practicing immigration law and debt settlement. He has featured as an expert legal analyst for many TV networks such as NDTV, Times Now and Sitarree TV. Articles about Shah Peerally and his work have appeared on newspapers such as San Jose Mercury News, Oakland Tribune, US Fiji Times, Mauritius Le Quotidien, Movers & Shakers and other prominent international newspapers. His work has been commended by Congress women Nancy Pelosi and Barbara Lee. He has a weekly radio show on KLOK 1170AM and frequently participates in legal clinics in churches, temples and mosques. His law group, Shah Peerally Law Group, has represented clients all over the United States constantly dealing with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Immigration and Custom Enforcement(ICE) and CBP (Customs Border Patrol (CBP) under the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). This department was formerly known as the Immigration and Nationality Services (INS).