My girlfriend came to US 9 months ago on a B2 visa in Nov 2011. We married 4 months later and applied for change of status to H4 in March 16th. Im on H1B. It has been 5 months and her status hasn't changed (approved by USCIS Vermont office). It is suppose to be 2.5 months. We contacted them 45 days ago about it and asked that it is already out of the normal processing time and what is going on and they emailed the next day that you will get a response in 60 days approval or further action. All are documents are legal and correct (my I-797 for my H1B and the marriage certificate from a Houston local court). First question is does that 60 days mean anything and they are required to respond or they can postpone it? If they don't respond by 60 days and we call will they say another 60 days again? What is the best action for us at this point? (going out of the country and apply for an H4 at a consulate is not an option for us)My second question is that my PERM should be approved in less than a month and I should file for I140 and I485 concurrently as soon as possible. If her status is not changed by then and is still pending can we apply for another change of status (permanent status) for I485 for her while this is still pending or we need to wait till H4 is approved anyways?
State/Country relating to question: Texas
Called USCIS 45 days ago and they said you will get an answer in 60 days
Hello. Well, they are only "required" to give an answer. They aren't required to give it in any specific amount of time and really the only way to truly force them to come to a decision is to sue them in federal court and that costs a great deal of money and you won't be getting any of that money back even if you win. I don't really see USCIS doing anything in 2.5 months even though the processing times may say that. I would say more like 6 is a better number. And yes, 60 days means basically not to bother them until 60 days have passed, then you can inquire again. But don't worry about this. This may just be that they are very busy at the moment, not that anything is wrong. As long as her change of status is pending, she is still in legal status. So she is safe.
And yes, you can also file the I-485 for her even though the I-539 is pending. You do not have to wait for her I-539 to be approved. Please let me know if you have any additional questions. I would be happy to answer them for you without additional charge. If there is a delay in getting back to you it is either because I am answering other questions or I had to log off, but I will be back with you as soon as possible. It is VERY important that if you are not satisfied, please ask additional questions. My goal is to provide you with top-notch service. And please don't forget to rate me, but please rate me on my service to you, not the state of the law because I have no control over that. Also, a bonus is always appreciated. If you would like to request me in the future, just go to http://www.justanswer.com/law/expert-guillermosenmartin/. Thank you!
10+ years of experience in various aspects of U.S. Immigration Law.
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