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What constitutes "work" while waiting on the AOS?

What constitutes "work" while waiting on the AOS?

Old Nov 22nd 2004, 6:48 am
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Question What constitutes "work" while waiting on the AOS?

I have a hypothetical situation:

What if my husband (he entered on a fiance visa, we got married in June 2004, had the AOS interview and are now waiting on the Perm. Residence acceptance, he doesn't have a SS card at this time) was doing some internet buying, selling, trading? Does this constitute employment?

What if he had an Ebay store? We're not talking millions here, he has a potential opportunity (due to his collecting of gaming miniatures), to get more heavily involved in this, at what point would the US government call this "work"? At what point does a hobby become a business? is it a certain money level? Income flowing in and not being converted to merchandise?

I mean, trading some guy a gaming miniature for one of his, or selling some miniatures and using that money to buy other, more desirable ones, this is the sort of thing we're talking about.

I don't want to step over any legality issues, not when we've worked so hard for the last 3 years to get everything right in the immigration process.

Any advice would be GREATLY appreciated.
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Old Nov 22nd 2004, 7:18 am
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Default Re: What constitutes "work" while waiting on the AOS?

Originally Posted by Chessiet
I have a hypothetical situation:
Ask a tax consultant if his hobby is considered a sole proprietorship business. If he has self employment income then he is required to have work authorization and keep accounting records. He will also need a soc sec # to be able to report such income to the IRS.

Good Luck!
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Old Nov 22nd 2004, 1:53 pm
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Default Re: What constitutes "work" while waiting on the AOS?

Originally Posted by Chessiet
What if he had an Ebay store? We're not talking millions here, he has a potential opportunity (due to his collecting of gaming miniatures), to get more heavily involved in this, at what point would the US government call this "work"? At what point does a hobby become a business? is it a certain money level? Income flowing in and not being converted to merchandise?
For tax purposes, if his hobby entails more than 500 hours/year, then it's not a hobby anymore! It's not about money as far as I can tell... it's about time. If he's investing more than 500 hours/year, it's work and he'll need to declare the income - internet based or not. I found this out several years ago when I was in a similar situation.

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Old Nov 22nd 2004, 3:51 pm
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Default Re: What constitutes "work" while waiting on the AOS?

Originally Posted by ian-mstm
For tax purposes, if his hobby entails more than 500 hours/year, then it's not a hobby anymore! It's not about money as far as I can tell... it's about time. If he's investing more than 500 hours/year, it's work and he'll need to declare the income - internet based or not. I found this out several years ago when I was in a similar situation.

Ian
Thanks both of you! I'll just have him start logging his hours, and if he's getting close to the mark we'll know to do something.

Ian, were you legally able to work in the US when you went over your 500 hours? Or how does that work? I'm curious as to how the Immigration Dept. views internet-based businesses.
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Old Nov 22nd 2004, 6:41 pm
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Default Re: What constitutes "work" while waiting on the AOS?

Originally Posted by Chessiet
I have a hypothetical situation:

What if my husband (he entered on a fiance visa, we got married in June 2004, had the AOS interview and are now waiting on the Perm. Residence acceptance, he doesn't have a SS card at this time) was doing some internet buying, selling, trading? Does this constitute employment?

What if he had an Ebay store? We're not talking millions here, he has a potential opportunity (due to his collecting of gaming miniatures), to get more heavily involved in this, at what point would the US government call this "work"? At what point does a hobby become a business? is it a certain money level? Income flowing in and not being converted to merchandise?

I mean, trading some guy a gaming miniature for one of his, or selling some miniatures and using that money to buy other, more desirable ones, this is the sort of thing we're talking about.

I don't want to step over any legality issues, not when we've worked so hard for the last 3 years to get everything right in the immigration process.

Any advice would be GREATLY appreciated.
Hi:

You pose an interesting question which immigration lawyers tend to kick around between themselves when we are worried about "unauthorized employment."

Why do you care insamuch as it has no effect on the immigration case?
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Old Nov 22nd 2004, 7:54 pm
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Default Re: What constitutes "work" while waiting on the AOS?

Originally Posted by Folinskyinla
Hi:

You pose an interesting question which immigration lawyers tend to kick around between themselves when we are worried about "unauthorized employment."

Why do you care insamuch as it has no effect on the immigration case?
I assumed it would be bad to work while he's still waiting for the EAD, correct? It's actually a dual concern: the immigration side (working without an EAD), and the IRS side (when does a hobby cross over to employment?)

I shall do much more research
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Old Nov 22nd 2004, 8:06 pm
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Default Re: What constitutes "work" while waiting on the AOS?

Originally Posted by Chessiet
I assumed it would be bad to work while he's still waiting for the EAD, correct? It's actually a dual concern: the immigration side (working without an EAD), and the IRS side (when does a hobby cross over to employment?)

I shall do much more research
See INA 245(C)
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Old Nov 22nd 2004, 8:27 pm
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Default Re: What constitutes "work" while waiting on the AOS?

Originally Posted by Chessiet
Ian, were you legally able to work in the US when you went over your 500 hours? Or how does that work? I'm curious as to how the Immigration Dept. views internet-based businesses.
For me it really wasn't an issue. I was able to work because I received an EAD card (yes, the actual card) when I crossed the border, and had a SSN about 2 weeks later. Mind you, that was in 1998 and the world was a less complex place than today. Also, since Kentucky required a SSN to get a driver's license, I was able to apply at our local SSA using driver's license as a reason for getting a SSN - rather than for work purposes. After Sheila and I married I submitted the apps for AOS, EAD, and AP. I received both EAD and AP within a month of applying - again, this was in 1998.

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