Hello, I’m Vaughan de Kirby. I’m an investment immigration attorney based here in San Francisco. Today I thought I’d briefly discuss a question, which is arising more and more recently, and that’s regarding the I-829. Just by way of background to make sure you’re up to date, an 829 is the document you file with USCIS in order to remove the conditions on your Green Card. Generally we can do that in about 20 months, we can start gathering information and get that filed. You will receive a receipt back from USCIS and that receipt will extend your Green Card for a period of one year. Now on the surface that sounds fine, except that USCIS now is taking over 20 months to approve your permanent Green Card for your 829 application. What this means obviously is that one-year extension will not fill that 20-month period. So there is going to be a period of time where it appears your Green Card is not valid.
Now, number one, during the one year period, if you leave the United States on a traveling, you should carry that receipt letter that extends your Green Card along with your passport so when you enter the United States, there will be no confusion and you won’t be detained at the airport for any period of time. If you’re remaining in the United States, there is no need to take any additional action after that one-year period as long as you’re staying in the United States. That letter will also serve as your authorization for employment. Now if you plan to leave the United States and that letter has expired, what you need to do is make an infopass appointment with the immigration service and go to that appointment. They will then stamp your passport and extend your Green Card. Again if you’re in the United States, you’re working or going to school and you don’t plan to travel abroad, you really don’t need to take any action immediately. But if you plan to take a trip abroad and that one-year has passed, then you should get that stamp on your passport so you won’t have any difficulty when you reenter the United States.
I hope this is helpful in solving the I-829 question. Please feel free to contact us or call 415-221-2345 if you have further questions.