USCIS approved an extension of OPT (optional practical training) for one of our Irvine clients. His OPT was set to expire in June 2013, and he filed for an extension without the help of an attorney. He received a detailed request for evidence from USCIS. They were concerned about several issues including 1) how he could be employed by a company based outside California, while he was working in Orange County; 2) whether he had been unemployed for any extended period of time while on OPT; and 3) where he had lived during his OPT.
We explained that our client has been employed by his employer which is based in another state. Our client works in Irvine as an on-site consultant for an Orange County based company. We showed USCIS that our client receives his pay checks from his out of state employer. We also provided the contract between his employer and the Orange County company to better explain the relationship. We had the CEO of our client’s employer write a detailed letter explaining the nature of the job duties, the relationship between the employer and the Orange County based company, and why our client could not perform his work while based outside Orange County.
Regarding the issue of unemployment during OPT, we provided pay stubs that showed that during the OPT period, our client was unemployed for less than ten days. Under 8 CFR 214.2(f)(10)(ii)(E), an OPT applicant’s unemployment may not exceed ninety days during the OPT period. Through paystubs, time sheets and letters from current and prior employers we were able to show that our client did not violate the 90-day rule.
The third issue was rather strange, and we weren’t sure why USCIS was so interested in our client’s addresses for the last four years. However, if USCIS issues a request for evidence it is best to answer as completely as possible. We provided proof of prior addresses including leases, letters from landlords and roommates, and bills to show where our client lived while in the US.
USCIS was satisfied with the evidence we presented, and they issued the employment authorization which will not expire until fall 2014. In the meantime, our client intends to pursue an H-1B visa so he can continue his work in the US. If you are considering OPT or need to renew your OPT, contact The Nunez Firm to schedule an appointment. Managing attorney Jay Nunez will meet with you to better explain the process and how we can help.