It gives me great pleasure to relate our recent success on behalf of one of our clients, Imelda Ho. Ms. Ho entered the United States in E-2 status for employment with a daycare center in Florida. That was in March of 2004 before the Florida coast suffered the successive blows of Hurricanes Charley, Frances, Ivan and Jeanne. The cost and struggle of living in a community devastated by storms convinced Ms. Ho to move to Southern California and file for an H-1B, however the cap for acceptance of applications was reached prior to her filing.
It was at that time that I suggested she switch her approach from that of "employee" to that of independent contractor and we successfully obtained new E-2 status as a business providing financial management services. This was based on her business plan, proof of incorporation, client list and providing source of funds invested in her new enterprise. As the H-1B becomes less available due to overwhelming demand in that category, the E-2 has become an effective non-immigrant visa for professionals with basic business sense and skills.
The E-2 status also acted as a "bridge" for Imelda, allowing her to maintain legal status while filing for labor certification and ultimately her legal permanent resident card. Ms. Ho was able to obtain legal permanent resident status in just over one year counting from the September 2006 filing of her second E-2 to the approval of her Legal Permanent resident status in November 2007.
This short processing time was accomplished through expedited processing on the E-2 visa, PERM based labor certification and the fact that with her professional degree, she qualified as an EB-2 or advanced degree category and avoided the substantial visa category backlog for EB-3 labor certified applicants.
Now, due to her determination and careful consideration of all available immigration options, Ms. Ho will celebrate the holidays this year knowing she has secured her green-card and will be able to have her children join her in 2008. Please keep in mind each person's qualifications and immigrant history is unique, and the remarkable results for Ms. Ho may not be available to other applicants.
Robert J. DuPont is an attorney with the law firm of Wilner & O'Reilly. Mr. DuPont Graduated from Yale University and USC Law School and is admitted to the California Supreme Court, and Federal District Courts in the Central and Northern Districts of California as well as the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. Mr. DuPont is a regular speaker with ILW, and chairman of the Immigration Law Committee with the Beverly Hills Bar Association. Mr. DuPont has risen to prominence with a 9 year practice in the field of immigration law as well as influencing Department of State and USCIS practices and policies through Federal District Court litigation including a Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals decision on V-Visas eliminating age-out of minor V-visa recipients.