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AC21 porting to self-employment - suggested FAQs

Discussion in 'Suggestions' started by Escu, Mar 18, 2010.

  1. Escu

    Escu Junior Member

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    Hi Ron,

    When you have the time, it would be very interesting to answer the following FAQs on AC21 and self-employment, and add them to the AC21 issues page. I've been crawling the net for a few days but couldn't find authoritative answers. Hopefully you could help. I've added some answers already from your posts on the forum, and some tentative ones from posts found elsewhere online.

    1. What are the risks associated with porting to self-employment and does USCIS scrutinize this more carefully?

    Tentative A: Porting to self-employment is risky. [1], [2]

    2. Should I notify USCIS that I've ported to self-employment?

    A: "In my experience, only bad things come from volunteering information to the
    CIS. I've never seen anyone benefit from doing so." [3]. See details here: http://www.immigration-information....otify-the-cis-that-i-ported-to-a-new-job.html

    3. Is changing attorney going to tip USCIS that I might've ported to self-employment?

    A: Unlikely, see http://www.immigration-information....n-ac21-without-informing-uscis.html#post42007

    4. Can I be without employment after 180 days have passed since my I-485 was filed, if I do/don't have an EAD?

    Tentative A: Some claim yes

    5. Do I need to incorporate, or can I remain an independent contractor/professional/freelancer? What is the exact title/designation that I need to use?

    6. Should *I* incorporate, or better an associate, so that I'm an employee?

    7. The answer to Question 8 of the Yates memo, Can an alien port to self-employment under INA ยง204(j)?, states: "Yes, as long as the requirements are met. [...] Second, it may be appropriate to confirm that the new employer and the job offer are legitimate through an RFE to the adjustment applicant for relevant information about these issues." What employer is the memo talking about, if I am self-employed? Will I write a letter of employment to myself?

    8. I expect my new company/contracting will only slowly pick up speed, but I do have savings that will support me in the meantime, so I won't need any form of welfare. Does self-employment need to be productive, or just legitimate? Do I need a minimum revenue, number of contracts/clients etc.?

    9. What if I actually don't manage to get any clients and revenue for, say, a year, and then I get an RFE or my PD becomes current?

    10. What if, on the contrary, my revenue is significantly more than what I am currently earning? Can then the adjudicating officer say that I have no intention/reason to work in your I-140 role after I'd get the Green Card? For example, I'm earning around 100k dollars now and my business brings in half a million a year. Why would I continue in the 100k role after the Green Card? Can they deny the case?

    11. From your experience, what is the typical evidence necessary to successfully answer a RFE if I've ported to self-employment under AC21?
    - Client testimonials? Contracts? Quotes, purchase orders, invoices? Tax returns?
    - articles on incorporation, partnership, LLC etc.?
    - a professional website? It has been claimed that "it's well known that USCIS officers start by doing Google and web searches for business details."

    12. In addition to RFEs, did any of your clients get audited?

    13. I've been self-employed for a while under AC21, and now my Priority Date has become current.
    To received the Green Card, do I need a job offer from a US employer, or can I continue my self-employment?

    Tentative A: various sources claim that you need a job offer from a US employer. [4], [5], [6]

    14. If I do need a job offer from a US employer, what evidence will I have to submit, and how will this happen, i.e. what will USCIS send before the actual green card, and how much time do I have to submit that evidence? The idea is that I may need to stop my self-employment and begin looking for a job offer from a US employer, which may take time and is risky.

    That's about all I can think of right now... thanks a lot for taking a look.
  2. Ron Gotcher

    Ron Gotcher Attorney at Law

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    Re: AC21 porting to self-employment - suggested FAQs

    Thank you for a very valuable and helpful idea. I will implement this over the weekend. If you have any other suggestions, please pass them along.

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