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Nisha Jones, Esq.
Nisha Jones, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 1081
Experience:  Managing Attorney at a Law Firm
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I have a ji visa student living with us. Is there a way to

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I have a ji visa student living with us. Is there a way to extend her visa? She wants to apply for political asylum (she is from Russia) but it's going to cost her approx 4k, which she doesn't have.2 questions:
JA: What is your official status? Do you have any pending applications or petitions with USCIS?
Customer: I am a US citizen, but she is a ji visa holder. She hasn't filed any paperwork and her visa expires 9/30. What are her options for staying?
JA: Have you talked to a lawyer yet?
Customer: She talked to one in Florida who said for political asylum she would need 4K. She would need to earn that money, but is seeking ways to do it legally. Also, what are the implications for us in renting to her if she overextends her visa?
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: No

Good morning, I am an Immigration Law attorney and former Prosecutor for the State Attorney's Office. I'll be answering your questions today, please understand this is for informational purposes only, and we do not currently have an attorney-client relationship. I've reviewed your question, please allow me just a few minutes to prepare some information for you, thank you!

She can apply for an extension of her J1 visa.

In order to get the extension she'll need to speak with the responsible officer at the institution where she's been studying.

Extensions are granted if she still needs more time to complete her current project for which she was approved for the J1 initially. It won't be granted for an extension of a new project. But if she still needs more time on her current research or project, she may be able to get an extension of her visa.

She should meet with her responsible officer as soon as possible though, because the extension needs to be submitted before her current visa expires.

If she is granted the extension, this could afford her the time she needs to get her petition for political asylum submitted and approved.

She wants to avoid a situation where she ends up overstaying her visa in the US, because here is the problem she can run into:

- if she overstays her visa by 6 months, she will face a 5 year re-entry bar to the US

- if she overstays her visa by 12 months, she will face a 10 year re-entry bar to the US

Therefore she wants to make sure to either get an extension granted, or get her political asylum petition turned in, before the expiration of her visa.

As far as if she is living with you later on with an expired visa, no you won't face any liability or sanctions for that.

I hope that helps! Please let me know if you have any other questions. Also, please take a moment to rate me using the stars at the top of the page, as it's the only way experts are compensated for our time on the site. I do not receive a salary here at JustAnswer, and am only compensated for my time after receiving a rating of 3 stars or more. The question won't close after rating, so you can still ask follow-up questions after. Thanks, ***** ***** it!

Nisha Jones, Esq. and 3 other Immigration Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Federal law states that we can face imprisonment and a fine by harboring an undocumented worker. Yet you say we wont face any liability or sanctions for that. How can this be?

Good morning! Having a student live with you is a bit different scenario than what that law was intended for, and in practice is not currently pursued by immigration officials.

In other words, we have not actually seen anyone criminally prosecuted for a situation in which you describe.

She has not entered the US illegally, she came here on a student visa to conduct her studies and research.

In practice this law is intended for those who have harbored individuals who entered the US illegally - ie. without inspection at a port of entry - and allowed them to work for them.

I hope that helps clarify, take care!

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
She is actually here on a work/travel j1 for the summer and is not planning to go home. She wants to apply for political asylum from Russia. Can you tell me the process and what you would charge to take her case?

Here's a link to the USCIS website that gives all the instructions on how to apply for asylum, as well as the necessary forms:

https://www.uscis.gov/humanitarian/refugees-asylum/asylum

Unfortunately per the rules of the website, as well as the rules of ethics that govern attorneys, I am not permitted to retain clients through the site.

However, to find a reputable immigration attorney in your area you can use the AILA website:

http://www.ailalawyer.org/

Also, f you have any more questions in the future and would like my help, please feel free to reach out to me here at JustAnswer by posting a new question and adding "For Nisha" to the first part of your question. Best of luck to you!