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Dual Intent" Visa - Can I Apply for U.S. Green Card in O-1 Status?

Hi William:

I am in United States in O-1 visa now for more than one year. Is the O-1 visa a "dual intent" visa like H-1B visa or L-1 visa? or can I apply for U.S. Green Card to become a permanent resident of the United States with O-1 status?


The "dual intent" appears to be recognized by USCIS for O-1 extraordinary ability visa holders. While not statutorily recognized as "dual intent" visa like the H-1B visa and L1 visa, the O-1 visa applicants are not required to maintain a residence in the applicant's home country. The U.S. immigration regulations provide that the approval of a permanent Labor Certification or the filing of a immigrant preference visa petition should not be a basis for denying an O-1 visa application, or the  extension of stay for O-1 visa holders.

However, the "dual intent" provision does not apply to O-2 visa applicants. Unlike the O-1 extraordinary ability nonimmigrant visa, the O-2 visa applicants must satisfy that he or she has a residence abroad, and no intent to abandon that residence in their home country.

While an O-1 visa applicant does not have to have a residence in the home country which he or she does not intend to abandon, there must however be an intent to remain on the O-1 visa. Therefore, the foreign national may legally come to U.S. in O-1 visa, and depart U.S. at the end of the authorized stay, and at the same time, seek to apply for U.S. Green Card to become a permanent resident of the United States.

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