[ HTJ Podcast ] Moving to the USA Conversation with Mike Dye, Immigration Attorney – 31st August 2021
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Good evening. Good morning. Good day, depending on where you are. Thanks for joining us for this live stream, where we're going to talk about moving to the USA. My name is Derren Joseph. I'm from HTJ.tax. So, we are a tax consulting firm. We're not an immigration firm. So, for those of you, who've been WhatsApping and emailing me we are not an immigration firm. And for that part of things, I'll introduce you to Michael Dye. Mike Dye is an immigration attorney Pikes on Mike. Please introduce yourself.
Hi everyone. Very nice to speak with you all today. Thank you for joining the conversation. It's a pleasure to be here and to answer any questions you have on immigration. As Derren mentioned, my name is Michael Dye. I'm a US immigration lawyer, and our main office is located in California in Orange County and the Southern part. If you're familiar with that, I'm licensed to practice law in California and also in the District of Columbia in DC.
We have offices in Singapore, Jakarta, Dubai, and in Doha, I was a former diplomat for a number of years, and then went into private law practice after that. So we've been working with immigration clients for about 15 years now, and it's always a pleasure to be able to speak with individuals like yourself, who are looking for an option on what to do in the United States.
Okay. That's wonderful. So just to kind of set, some ground rules, please remain muted, guys that are now coming in, ive muted. Everyone that has come in, please remain on mute. And only when we get to the Q and a pod where you get to ask questions, then, you know, you can raise your hand, and then you can imagine ask questions. But for those who listen to or read what we were saying earlier. So when we sent out the invite, we asked you to submit questions in advance.
So we have quite a few questions that were sent in advance. And so we will start with those. And then once that's done, then those who are logged on can ask questions. You can ask questions either by typing in the chatbox below because some of you are on Facebook and LinkedIn and stuff, so you can just type your loan out. I'll get it. Otherwise, if you're in zoom, you can type all. You can raise your hand and then you can speak. So the first one is a lady based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Hi, so she is 56 years old and she has a boyfriend in us in the US and in Michigan. And she's asking if I marry my American boyfriend and get a green card through marriage with him. Can I sponsor my daughter for her green card? Daughter is 22 years old and already the grad student in Mike.
Okay. Yeah. That's a great question. And just let me know if you can't hear me or if we're having connection problems, but I can hear the question fine. Yes, it is possible to do that. So if you get married to a US citizen and you get a green card, you are able to file green card petitions for your children who are unmarried under the age of 21. And also, for those adult children, sons, or daughters that are over the age of 21.
So it is absolutely possible. There are special categories to do that. The waiting queues and the waiting periods can be different depending on what country you're coming from. Malaysia fits into the overall worldwide queue, which doesn't have an extra wait time. There are other countries in different categories that have extremely long backlogs though. So, it all depends on where you're coming from. But to answer your question.
Okay. So as a follow-up on that, she's asking how easy is it to her for her to get a green card when, when she gets married?
Yeah. So, the process is straightforward process, you know, I wouldn't necessarily say it's easy. It's, it's very document heavy. So, you have to look at immigrating to the United States, like you're starting a, a marathon, and it's a process where the assembly line starts in motion. And so, you want to keep the assembly line going. And so, you want to have everything in order, the right documents submitted at the right time to the right place, make sure that everything is clear and, and explicitly provided in each step of the way, because once the assembly line stops, then your sentence gets off track of it.
So, you just want to keep things moving slowly, but absolutely a marriage to a US citizen or marriage to a green card holder is something where the us government actively has categories in place to bring you over to the United States. It's a heavily used visa. So, you know, to answer as question as it easy, it's straightforward. And if you need legal help or you need professional guidance to get you through that, that's something that I would recommend.
Obviously, that's kind of what we do, but you know, to, to make sure you understand that you're not required to have a lawyer, but if you want one and you want to make sure it's done the right way and you don't have any hiccups, then of course, you know, I would say get some guidance on that.
Okay, wonderful. He's also asking what a green card allows someone to work in the US.
Absolutely. When you get a green card, you have work authorization anywhere in the United States. So, there are no restrictions once you have permanent residency in the states, and that gives you the option to live anywhere in the US to find employment anywhere in the US so your status in the United States, once you get permanent residency, it's not tied to your employer anymore. So, it's a huge benefit when you get a green card.
Okay. That's great. And what's, can you talk to the process, generally, the process for her then applying for a green card for her daughter, please?
Yeah, absolutely. So, when you go through the green card process, you can have your children attached to your petition at the same time. And so basically how this works. For example, if you're getting to the United States, filing a petition based on marriage to a US citizen or a permanent resident, you file a petition in which you list your dependence, and those dependent children can come with you. And there's also a provision to file a green card.
Once you have permanent residency for those children who are over the age of 21. And so that's a different preference category to get them to the United States. But the thing to remember is that they have to be unmarried. And so, you can bring your kids and your children to the US under 21. They can come with you under your petition process. If they're over the age of 21, there's a different petition filing that we do for them. And that gets them the same preference type of green card process that you go through yourself.
It just takes a bit longer and different forms need to be filed. But I would say on average, the thing you need to remember is that this whole process is going to take you at least one to two years to get through COVID right now has caused some delays in terms of getting immigrant visa appointments abroad. But if you can demonstrate that you really need to get, get to the United States, there's an economic need. Perhaps your family is relying on income, or you need family unity to be together.
You have very small kids, and the other spouse can't take care of everyone, things like that. We can generally get your visa appointment moved up in the process. So, we're at an interesting time right now, the demand is very high. And so, the appointment availability is, is limited at the same time because of COVID. And so, we can help you get through that and figure out ways to get you bumped up in the queue.
Okay. That's wonderful. Thank you very much for that. So, a question from someone else, I think they may be based in Singapore, but can you talk a bit about the E2 visa please? The E2 visa?
Yeah, absolutely. So, the E2 visa is called the treaty investor visa, and it is a non-immigrant visa based on a quote, substantial investment in a business that you're going to develop and direct in the United States. And this visa is actually a really, really good visa to have. It's very flexible, but it's only available for about 80 countries and you have to be a national firm, one of these 80 countries to actually be able to apply for this visa.
And as I mentioned before, it's called the treaty investor visa. And so that's what that means. There has to be a treaty of trade or commerce between the United States and that other country to be able to apply for this visa. Singapore is one of those countries. So that's great that you’re from Singapore, you can actually apply for the E2 visa, other countries in the region like Thailand, South Korea, Taiwan. They also can do so Australia, New Zealand now.
So, a lot of opportunity in Asia to seek out this visa, the nuts and bolts of this visa are, as I mentioned, it has to be a substantial investment in a business in the US so this can be any type of business. There's no restrictions on the sector or segment that you're investing into. It can be a restaurant food and beverage outlet, hotel motel, any type of retail outlet, basically anything you can think of in terms of doing business.
When you talk about the investment level, we generally recommend that E2 investments should be at least 150,000 or more generally when you're over 150,000, you're on pretty solid ground. And the embassy is not going to give you much of a hard time, usually on questioning, whether that's really substantial. And then the higher you go, of course, you know, the safer ground you're on. We've done two investments from much less than that.
I just wouldn't recommend it because the government really wants to make sure that this enough money to get your business up and running. And it is substantial. You have to have a company registered in the United States. You have to have, or I would highly recommend that you have a physical office that's outside of your home. The government doesn't like home offices for doing business in the US and then the only other real requirement is that you have to have this business, provide a living for more than you and your immediate family.
And that means that you have to at least hire one or two people within the first few years. So, it's got to give some type of employment to other people in the United States. But other than that, for, for flexibility of great visa, it's a five-year multiple entry visa, and you can continue to renew that visa indefinitely, as long as your business keeps going. So, we've had individuals on E2 visas for 20 plus years.
It's, it's just a great visa to have it resembles a green card in many ways, because of the flexibility and the in and out privileges. You don't have to spend a certain number of days in the United States. So again, great visa. If you come from a country, that's able to do that.
Okay. Wonderful. Thanks for that next question. Someone's saying, okay. I have a few questions about a green card. I might get the immigration visa stamp in my passport in September, and we'll visit the US or enter the US in October, will my green card become active when I land in the US?
Yeah, that's a great question. So, if you're going to your immigrant visa interview in September, once you finish that interview, you're going to have a visa stamped in your passport, and that visa is your immigrant visa. And so, when you take that to the United States on that first trip to the US you're going to be stamped into the US as a resident. So, the visa itself acts as the actual green card. Once you present it to the officer and they stamp you in the actual card comes in the mail about a month later.
But once you enter that first time, your first footprint into the US you are considered a permanent resident.
Okay. That's great. Thank you very much. He or she has some follow-up questions. The next one is its tax related. Do I have to pay US taxes for the entire 2021 or only the period in 2021? After I get a green card, do I have to disclose my entire things for the year anyways? So, to answer your question in 2022, when you're doing a 2021 return, it will be something called a dual status return, where as you kind of intermediate, you're correct in that for the part of year, in which you have entered the US and you are a US person for tax purposes, you would be doing something called a form 1040, which is for a us tax resident.
But for the period for you enter the us, you'll be doing combined will be your first year's return. And for the, for the period of time where you were non-resident, you'd only be declaring your US source income. If you have any like investment income for the period of time after you've entered the US and therefore you become a US person for, from a tax perspective, you correct, you disclose will wide financial assets, and you declare your worldwide income.
It's all subject to tax. So, I hope that helped they are asking what tax rate do I need to pay. And it really depends. The US like many jurisdictions has a graduated tax rate. So, the more you earn the higher the bracket that you will fall into. So, for federal taxes, it tops off. At this point, it could change is going to talk with 37% for state taxes depends on the state you’re in. And the highest state will be hit California. Where Mike is based.
Next question from the same person as designated address will be in New York. Do I need to pay state taxes as well?
If you are tax resident in New York, then yes. And yes, it will be something. If you want to consider moving to one of the eight states where there is no income tax like Florida, Nevada, Texas, you know, Alaska, or whatever, that is an option that you can take. And if I have investments, do I sell my holdings and start a fresh?
That is something that people do. There are mechanisms, and you'll need to speak with you select a tax advisor, which is once you become a IS person, all your worldwide investments and assets would be subject to taxes. So, if it is that you have an asset that may appreciate in value, you may want to establish a new what we call basis. So, we established a new basis. And when you do sell? Once you're a US person the delta between the basis and the selling price will be subject to tax.
So, the higher the basis, the more the capital gain stats, obviously. So, what we do with some of our pre immigration planning, where we go through line, and we talk about the tax consequences of that particular asset after you've come US exposed. And if it is that it's going to be a problem, or you don't like whatever the tax consequences would be, we can speak to you about mitigating that otherwise, you know, you can keep it as it is. And one of the ways of mitigating the capital gains will be to establish a higher basis.
And okay, so moving on the next person. So that's a gentleman, the guy who is based in Thailand, so US citizen based in Thailand, he now has a Thai girlfriend. And he's asking whether we can touch on the various ways in which he can get, bring his tight girlfriend with him into the US and he mentioned tourist, fiancé and marriage, Mike?
Yeah. So, you hit it right on the head. You got the three pathways to get into the United States. There's interesting twists with each of those ways. So, I'll start with the first one. You mentioned bringing your fiancé into the United States as a tourist. So, this is a way that many people do bring their significant others or finances into the US and then later file for a green card for them.
When they, after they get married, this is not the proper way as a lawyer. I have to tell you the proper way is not to bring someone in as a tourist. If you have the intent for them to get a green card, because when you bring them in under a tourist visa, when you present your tourist visa to the immigration officer at the airport, you're presenting the intent for that person to be a tourist. And so that intent is different if you actually intend for them to become a permanent resident.
And so that's where you get into some problem situations. It is possible when you do that, when you bring someone in as a tourist, and then later file for a green card for them, the government's going to look extra closely at that case. They're going to see, well, wait a minute, this individual came in as a tourist, and now you're filing just a few weeks or a few months later to get them a green card. So, you knew all along, this was going to happen. That's where you hit problems. And so, the government does give people the benefit of the doubt.
If the individual comes in as a tourist and 90 days have passed before you file for a permanent resident classification for your spouse, it is possible to do that. And the government will give them the benefit of the doubt. But again, I should tell you, it's not the proper way to do it because the government's going to look at this as people trying to cut corners and lines and get ahead of the queue. So, you just have to keep that in mind. And that's something that we can help you with as a law firm to make sure you do it the right way.
The second pathway to do this is to bring your fiancé in as a fiancé under the K1 visa. It's absolutely possible to do that. We do it routinely in our office. Here you file for what's called a fiancé petition, get them classified in the system as your fiancé. And then they go to the embassy, and they get the fiancé visa stamped in their passport. They generally have a limited amount of months to enter the United States. And you have 90 days to get married once you're, once she's in the United States, once that happens, you can file paperwork and they go immediately into the permanent resident queue. So, this is a kind of similar to the show 90-day fiancé. If you've ever seen that on TV, that's the K1 visa process. And so very popular way to bring your fiancé to the US the other option is that if you're already married, or if you really want to get married quickly, you don't want to wait around for a fiancé visa, and then go to the US to get married.
Maybe your plans are to get married abroad. Anyway, in Thailand, you can do that. You can get married abroad, and then you apply for a marriage visa, and that visa will bring your, your spouse in as a green card holder. So, it's, it's a great process as well. Each of those steps and processes, they have their own timelines, their own fee structure in terms of what the government filing fees are and all of that. But, but all of them, again, very good options. And, you can do them the right way if you structure your plans accordingly.
Okay. That's great. Thank you. And sorry, I just want to note to those that are watching on the Facebook livestream. I'm seeing you questions, but we just need to go through those that were submitted in advance first. So, we get to you as after. Thanks for your patience. So, the next question would be kind of sibling petition for a green card.
Yeah. US citizens can petition for their siblings, but US permanent residents cannot. So, you have to be a US citizen, and then absolutely you can bring your siblings in. The one thing to remember is that the sibling category it's called F4, it's a preference fourth, fourth category in the family-based system. It's the longest backlog to category of any visa category in the United States. And, you know, depending on what country you come from Mexico, for example, the Philippines, the backlogs can be huge. They can be more than 20 years. So, so yeah, you, you can absolutely do it. And what a lot of our clients do, if even if they come from those countries with long backlogs, they filed a petition, and then they go about their business, just forget about it. And then years later when it's approved, you know, if it's the right time in their life to move perfect, they've already got it done, but yeah, absolutely. You can, US citizens can petition for siblings.
Okay. That's great. Thank you. And next one, well, we discussed this previously. This is a married couple in Trinidad in the Caribbean, and they have a master's degree they're in management positions and their respective companies, and they want to move to the US so the first question is, would opening a business be the best direction to treat, to achieve green card status?
Yeah. So, a great question talking about employment-based and work-based visas in the U S there's a whole bunch of ways to do this. The US system is based on a category of one through five on employment-based opportunities in the US and I'll just talk very briefly on this. I won't get too many people bogged down in the weeds here, but it goes from EB1 to EB5.
And that means employment-based first preference category all the way to employment-based fifth preference, and really quickly here EB1. This is for individuals who are multinational managers and executives of the company, and they're going to be transferred to the US to work at a us facility or a us related office. It's also for outstanding researchers and professors, and also for people of extraordinary ability. These are people who are generally at the top of their field, you know, lots of publications written about them.
They're absolute professionals in what they do so that's one. For EB2 these are people who generally have a master's degree or higher, and they have a job offer from a US employer, but it is important to know that if you do apply under a certain special provision within this category, you don't need a job offer. If you're going to work in a field that's in the national interest of the United States, for example, you are working in the field of sanitation and you have high-level experience dealing with a certain technology that can really help certain areas of the United States with the sanitation and, related sector. Great. You might actually qualify for what's called a national interest exception. And so that is a way to actually come to the US and not even have a job offer. For EB3 these are people with generally a bachelor's level degree or higher, and it does require a job offer from a US employer. For EB4, a very special category it's for religious professionals, and also for translators and interpreters that have helped the US military and conflicts abroad.
And then that leads us to EB5 and that is immigrant investor visa. And so, this is a visa in which you invest a minimum amount right now of at least 500,000 into a commercial enterprise in the United States. That's going to employ at least 10 people based on your investment. So super-fast employment-based review there, but those are the categories. So, to answer your question, absolutely. It just depends on how you want to do that.
If you want to set up a new business in the United States, there's a whole bunch of requirements that we would go through to see if you're qualified to transfer yourself over and run that. And so that's something that I'd be happy to talk to you offline about, and, and we can kind of go through those options.
Okay. Wonderful. Thanks to you. Thank you for that. Moving on. So, this is a bit, well, for me, it seems unusual. So, this person is writing to say that they served in the US military and Iraq, and for whatever reason, they're in a certain country in the Middle East. I won't say which one it is, but they have misplaced, I guess, the US passport and their social security card and the ID. So, what's the best way for retrieving those very, very important documents, Michael?
Yeah, that's a good question. I mean, sometimes it does happen. Documents are lost or they're destroyed and you're moving around, and you can't find them. The first thing I would recommend is to contact the US embassy or the US consulate, where you're at and within each of the embassies, there's an American citizen services unit. And so, I would contact them. It's called the ACS unit, and then give them your information, your date of birth, your name, you know, the background information on yourself.
And if you have a copy maybe of an old passport, or, you know, your old passport number, a copy of your current needs, so wherever you're at, things like that, they will look you up in the system and they'll help you with the next steps forward. There are other ways that we can retrieve old documents and your file in the immigration system. We can file for, what's called a freedom of information act requests, where we request all of your records from the government. And when we get the record requests back, you will see copies of your passport number, copies of other identifying information that will help you.
Okay. Perfect. I hope that helps the, the person, because it does sound like a very distressing situation to be in but moving on some questions from the chat box here in zoom, how does processing have a K3 visa where this spouse is a foreign person and and there's a US citizen partner as well. And how long does it normally take considering the COVID situation?
Yeah, that's a good question. COVID has really thrown the whole world for a loop, you know, in each of these countries and consulates, what used to be very streamlined immigrant visa or visa interview scheduling is now up in the air. I was reading the report, I believe by the Cato Institute that just came out recently a few months ago or a few weeks ago. And there was acknowledgement that more than 60% of US embassies and consulates were not open for any processing within the last month or so.
So, as you can imagine, huge backlogs at some of these places. So, things are getting back online, and they were coming back online. But the new Delta situation that's, you know, spreading as now causing a little bit of slowdown again. But to answer your question, there are petition forms and filing forms that are filed to the US citizenship of immigration service. And those are filed with evidence that you are married to a US citizen. So, it's copies of your marriage certificate.
And then the government wants to know if you haven't been married for very long, the government wants to know that this marriage is real, and that's a bonafide relationship between you and your spouse. And so, they're going to ask for documents, like, how do you prove your relationship? This would be photos cards. Did you acknowledge special dates in your relationship, anniversaries or birthdays evidence of time spent together? Did you take vacations together? Can you prove that with airline tickets, boarding passes, things like that. So, you're basically creating the story for the government to follow along your relationship and to show that it's real. So, we file all of that with the government, the government then approves the petition, and then it's sent to the US embassy where you're living. And then when you go in for your interview, you get stamped as a K3. And so that's your marriage visa, and it allows you to come into the United States and then proceed forward with the permanent resident process timelines. I think you're looking at anywhere from realistically speaking, I would say 12 to 24 months, depending on what embassy or consulate you're dealing with. And then depending on whether or not we can argue that there are situations where you need this expedited, because the government does have an expedite process, and we've done it for many clients in the past, but it generally is. It's not an easy thing to do, but we can help you determine whether we can get you through in that way as well.
Okay, great. I hope that helps. I think that person is based in the Philippines from another Asian country nearby from Malaysia. So, someone is asking, he describes himself as an average Malaysian. So, I'm guessing that he has no connection to US, like no family or whatever, what would be the process to get a work-related visa to live in the US?
Yeah, that's a good question. So, if you're looking at work visas for the US I think for you as a, you know, you're saying you're a typical Malaysian working in Malaysia, and you're looking for a job in the United States. I think if that's the case, you would probably have your best luck at getting what's called an H1B visa first. And that is the United States temporary worker visa. And so, this is a visa that's provided to people who have a job offer from a US employer, and they can apply for the visa directly at the consulate. After a petition has been filed for them, and they get approved and they get through the H1B category, the approval notices taken with you, and you apply for that H1B visa at a US consulate or embassy abroad. It's valid for three years at a time. And then you can do certain things to end up staying in the United States and then getting sponsorship from that US employer to get a green card. You know, there's no easy way to get a work visa in the United States. Again, you have to know someone to give you that job offer. US has a tough employment system that generally in all ways requires a job offer from a US employer. Unless you're going to set up a business yourself, you're going to make an investment in the US or you're being transferred to a US company that's related to your foreign company now. But if you want to talk offline, I'm happy to go through some of these options and kind of determine what might be best for you.
Okay. That's great. Thank you, Emma. I think that question that was, you know, the answer that was just given by Mike would apply to your situation as well. So, if not just type below and let me know, I think that answers you, Emma, moving down, does the response you just gave apply to someone from the Kyrgyzstan, Kyrgyz Republic and from Nepal as well? Or would they be like a special category?
Yeah, no, I think those countries absolutely. The temporary worker visa is something that those countries could apply for. In the United States we really only have one regular work visa. And that's what I mentioned before. It's called the H1B. It's the temporary worker visa. The problem is that the immigration laws that created this visa many years ago, they're very outdated. And so, we only have a limited number of these H1B visas each year.
And there are far more applications than there are numbers. And so, in turn this whole H1B system, it goes into a lottery. And so, once you apply, you have to be selected for the lottery and then approved based on, you know, your credentials and the application. And so, if you can get through all of that, it's a great visa to have. I mentioned, it's three years at a time. You can come into the US and then once you're working with your employer and they see you, they like you generally, a lot of employers are willing to sponsor you and they'll sponsor you through that category. I mentioned before, it's called EB3, it's a green card for people who have at least a bachelor's level or higher. So, you can go H1B non-immigrant visa, get into the US do some work there and then get a green card under EB3.
Thanks for that Mike, I hope that answers your question. So that will apply not just to Kyrgyzstan, but to other Central Asian countries as well. Okay. Looking so, Ronald, come to your question, not time to being patient, is it possible for a non-resident to be….I think this may have been answered by what you just said, but I'll say it anyway. Is it possible for non-resident to be invited by an American citizen to work in his hospital as an employee? So, he knows someone running a hospital and he would like to work for him, Mike?
Yeah, absolutely. It may very well be possible that this is a situation where we need to look at your credentials and then look at the potential employer and look at how they're going to plan to bring you in the type of position you would be filling the salary that they're going to offer. So, these are all things that we would do through a screening, and we would determine whether or not you would fit into a certain category. And in this case, there are some other types of potential opportunities that may fit for medical professionals just depends on your licensing and your background and the position.
Great. Thank you for that. Another question from Malaysia. Malaysia is well-represented today. This is from Ash. Hi, Michael, what is the best route for a foreign trained lawyer in a common law jurisdiction? IE Malaysia to move to the US with the intention to apply for a permanent residence and qualify as an attorney in the US. It’ll be great if you can suggest which states are more suitable than others. Mike?
Yeah. That's a great question. You know, I think the best thing, it just depends obviously on your background and your financial situation and your ability to take time, to do certain things to prepare. But I think the best way is to get an LLM and, to get that degree in place, which gives you access to take in various states in the United States, gives you access to take the bar exam and to qualify as a US lawyer. So, once you get your US licensing done, then you're good to practice in the state, in which you're licensed. And then if you practice in a federal type of law area, for example, like immigration, like I do, that's federal law in the United States. So, you can practice in any state. Once you're licensed in one state, you have authority and licensing to practice federal law in any state. And so that's what I would recommend. I mean, definitely get your LLM and get your ability to sit for a US bar exam, because that's the biggest hurdle. There's not really any visas that allow for and lawyers to come into the United States and in any way, engage in US law.
So, you have to be licensed as a US lawyer. There are ways for you to, for example, to come into the US and be hired as a foreign legal consultant. So, you would be practicing Malaysian law for that law firm, and you'd be brought in under that capacity. And so, there's different ways to do that as well, but I think it kind of depends on what you really want to do in the US long-term.
Okay. Wonderful. Ashley. I hope that helps. Now we have from Verbeek. So, another question from Alicia, my company's, parent company is in the US, and I want to move there and continue working. What is the normal duration for the L1A processing? And is there a lottery for the L1A visa?
Yeah, that's a great question. So, the L1 category is called the intra-company transferee category for multinational managers and executives. L1A is a great visa. If you're working as a manager or an executive or a foreign company, for example, in Malaysia, and that company is transferring you to the United States to work in a related company. It can be a parent branch affiliate subsidiary, some type of a relationship with that foreign entity. And you're being transferred to work in a same or similar capacity as a manager or an executive for that US office, great visa, if you can get it. And it requires sponsorship from that US entity to do that, the duration that you get, if the entity in the United States has been running for longer than a year, if it's not a new US company, if it's been there for a while, you can actually get your first L1A visa for three years, and then you can extend it again for three, and you can stay in the US up to seven years on an L1A visa.
Before you hit that seven-year mark, you have to have moved into a different type of visa category. And what most people do is they go from L1A. They work for a few years, and that US company sponsors them for a green card under EB1. And so this is back to what I was talking about some, some time ago, and I know there's a lot of numbers and, and it's like alphabet soup when we're talking about immigration and it's hard to follow, but if you come in under the L1A category, then you can move into EB1 for multinational managers and executives, and that's the way to get a green card. So, a great route if you can do it.
Okay. That's great. Another question, someone from a country in Africa, he's saying that he's a plumber in this country. Is it possible how would he move to the US to practice his trade?
Yeah, it's a great question. I think in your case, it gets really, really important to look at your background and your work history and your employment at, and what you've been doing. And to see if we can categorize you into something with a, with a specialized skill set within the plumbing field and in, if we can do that, we can get you in under certain types of visa categories that may have opportunities within your specialty.
But if we just apply for you as a plumber, it's very difficult because the United States has a trade of plumbing as well. And so, for you to get job offers and to work in the US you have to show that you're not taking away a job from a US person. And so, we just need to carefully look at your background, and there's a lot of ways we can let the government know that you're not going to take away a job from a US person. You bring a special skillset to the table, and we can present you in that light and, and try to help you.
Okay, wonderful. So that's it for the questions that have been submitted. If any of you have questions, please feel free to type in the box below. We have about 15 minutes. Cause we just going to stop this after an hour. Otherwise, if you want to raise your hand, if you're on zoom, if you want to raise your hand, then you can unmute then and ask a question, but otherwise you can just type in the, one of the boxes below. All right. And while we wait quite a number of visa categories have been mentioned, how many visa categories are there just out of curiosity in the United States to get into the United States?
Yeah. You know, if you take every single type of visa category, I believe that there's more than 160 or something like that, but with the variation. So, there's, I mean, there's basically a category for almost everything, you know, and this includes special categories for diplomats and for NGOs and for everything from outstanding people in, in the arts and in business and in science for professional athletes. So, you know, there's something for everyone for sure.
Okay. Great. Any other questions? So, I'm just going to jump on, see what people are talking about on Facebook. Okay. YouTube. Okay. I think that's actually it, I'm not seeing any further questions in that case, Mike, thank you very much for your time.
We appreciate you coming in and sharing of your, sharing your insights. Now, if someone wants to reach out to you and engage you for your services, what's the best way to reach you?
Sure. They can definitely contact us by email. Our website is www.mikedyelaw.com. And then you can contact me since we've been speaking personally, you can contact me directly through my email. It's email@example.com.
And I'm happy to speak with anyone who appeared today and, and to try to help them find a solution for what they want to do.
Oh, okay, great. Sorry. We just had a shy person send in a last-minute question. Okay. They have a query about marriage-based visa. My wife is in the US and she's an LPR, I guess that means a lawful permanent resident. She applied for naturalization in September 2020. And her interview date was given for December 2021, December this year, which is again, postponed due to COVID until March 2022.
Now she obtained her green card through a previous marriage, which was officially ended in 2019. This is very specific. I don't know. Well, anyway, I'll just finish it. A marriage took place in February 2020, and we had our son born in May 2021. I had one refusal for a visa, a visitor visa, I guess in March 2021. What are my options to go there and be with my family?
Yeah. Yeah. That's a very detailed, a detailed scenario. So, I think this one contact me offline and send me your entire history. And then I'll be able to point you in the right direction because a situation like this it's really fact specific. And so, I don't want to lead you in the wrong direction without reviewing it closely.
Okay. That's great. And just to repeat it's www.mikedyelaw.com. Mike's email address is firstname.lastname@example.org all one word.
Yes. Alex, I'll type it. So, someone just put it, thank you. Thank you for putting Mike's URL in the box.
So, Alex, you can have a look at it, and you can, and you can reach out to Mike directly. Mike, once again, I thank you for your time and please guys feel free to speak. Cause I'm looking, you know, in some of the groups that I'm in the, you know, the chat groups on Facebook and stuff, there's so much misleading. Information is really good to go to the source. Someone who's qualified and experienced and knows who, you know, what they're talking about. So please reach out to Mike directly with your cases. Thank you very much, Mike.
Thank you very much, everyone for joining us and we'll see you next time.
Thanks a lot. Thanks, Derren. Thanks guys.
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