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USCIS Form I-485 Supplement J is used for porting of pending I-485 applications to a new employer or a new job.

The portability provisions of AC21 require the new position be “same or similar.”

Supplement J is used to request job portability under INA section 204(j) to a new, full-time, permanent job offer that the beneficiary intends to accept once USCIS approves the pending I-485. This new job offer must be in the same or a similar occupational classification as the job offered to the beneficiary in the I-140 petition that is the basis of the original I-485.

Supplement J must be completed and signed by both the beneficiary and the new employer.

Supplement J asks for details of the offered position including the SOC code.

The SOC code may not be clear or easy to determine simply by looking at a job description so in AC21 portability situations a careful analysis may be required to (1) identify the SOC code for a specific job and (2) analyze whether the proposed SOC code differs than the initial sponsored green card position and, if so, what are the ways to justify that the new position is “same or similar” and qualifies for AC21 porting.01010

How Does USCIS Determine What Qualifies as a Same or Similar Occupational Classification?

(From USCIS I-485 Supplement J Instructions)

To determine whether the new job qualifies as the same or similar occupational classification as the job in the approved permanent labor certification (if applicable) and Form I-140, USCIS will review the totality of the record, including Supplement J and any additional evidence submitted by the applicant and/or employer.

In determining whether the new job is in the same or a similar occupational classification as the job specified in Form I-140, USCIS will consider factors, including, but not limited to:

  1. The similarity of the job duties and responsibilities; and/or
  2. The similarity of the educational, experience, and/or training requirements.

USCIS may refer to resources published by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) and its Bureau of Labor Statistics, or other relevant resources, to assist in determining whether the new offer of employment is in the same or similar occupational classification.

These resources include:

  1. DOL Occupational Outlook Handbook at www.bls.gov/ooh;
  2. DOL O*NET system at www.onetonline.org; and 3. Standard Occupational Classification system used by DOL’s Occupational Employment Statistics program at www.bls.gov/soc. I-485 Supplement J

These resources contain detailed information on job titles, duties, educational, experience, and/or training requirements, rates of pay, and, in many cases, information on similar or related occupations.

Applicants may also use any of these resources or other relevant evidence to demonstrate that the new job is in the same or similar occupational classification as the job specified in Form I-140.

Immigration Office Solutions is not a law firm and is not a substitute for the advice of an attorney. Immigration Office Solutions is not affiliated with or endorsed by United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) or any other government agency. Blank immigration forms with written instructions are available for free at the USCIS website. Attorney services are provided by independent attorneys and are subject to a separate Attorney Agreement.

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