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Can F-1 Student Change the Non-Immigrant Intent and Apply for U.S. Green Card?

Hi William,

As a F-1 student, can I change the
non-immigrant intent and apply for U.S. Green Card?


U.S. immigration law does not bar F-1 status holders from wanting to change their intent once they arrive in the U.S and have resided for a period of time. The USCIS form I-140 and I-485 serves as a legal conduit that allows non-immigrants to change their status to legal U.S. permanent residents or Green Card. While F-1 status holders are not prohibited from wanting to pursue a change of intent from non-immigrant to immigrant, there are certain issues that arise when a F-1 student decides to do so.

One of the most prevalent issues related to a change of intent is USCIS’ notion of preconceived intent or visa fraud. As a general rule, a person cannot have preconceived intent to enter the U.S. for a purpose different from that permitted under the F-1 visa.

To change your status from an F-1 student visa to a U.S. Green Card, you may self-petition for an EB-1A or EB2 NIW Green Card, receive the sponsorship of your employer, adjust your status to a dual-intent visa such as H-1B, L1 or O1 visa, become an investor, or marry your love one who happens to be a U.S. citizen or a lawful U.S. permanent resident.

Some people are eligible to apply for an EB-1A or EB2 NIW Green Card after completing a course of study in the United States. EB-1A visas is available to people with extraordinary abilities in the arts, sciences, education, business or athletics, may be a way for you to gain lawful permanent residency and, eventually, citizenship in the United States.

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