San Diego Extension of Stay Lawyer
During your visit to the U.S. on a B-1 or B-2 visa, the need or desire to extend your stay may arise. On occasion, you may benefit from opportunity to stay in the U.S. longer than you had initially planned or you may have been given a chance to work or study in the U.S. for an additional period of time.
Application to Extend/Change Non immigrant Status
If this instance, you will need to file an “Application to Extend/Change Non immigrant Status” with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Whether or not USCIS approves your application is completely within its discretion, so you should provide more than adequate evidence to show that you intended to remain in the U.S. for only the authorized period of time and that you entered as a tourist for business, pleasure, or medical treatment, even if your plans have now changed.
File As Soon As Possible
Time is of the essence. You should file your request as soon as you learn you might need to change your non immigrant classification or stay in the U.S. for a longer period of time. USCIS recommends that you file your request at least 60 days before your permitted stay expires.
It is a common occurrence for a person in the United States with a temporary visa looks to extend his or her stay. This may be easily done by filing an “extension of stay” in the United States. However, just filing an extension of stay does not guarantee it will be granted. The USCIS will look at the reason for the extension, as well as if the applicant has true intentions to return to his or her home country once the stay is over. Contact our offices for prompt assistance with your Extension of Stay application.
When to Apply
There are strict guidelines regarding the time to apply for your extension of stay. You should not apply for an extension within three months of entering the United States This might cause the USCIS to conclude you had plans to extend the visa prior to entering the country. This assumption can be used against you and compared to the “reason for entering” you provided to the consulate or port of entry.
It’s advised you apply for your extension of stay at least 45 days prior to the expiration of the I-94.
The duration of your stay is based on the expiration of the I-94, not the expiration of the date on the visa stamp. The day your visa is stamped is actually irrelevant. As soon as your I-94 expired you are considered out of status and your visa is void. This happens even if you have applied for the extension before the I-94 is expired. If you have applied, and the I-94 visa expired, your stay is considered an “unlawful presence” for the purposes of inadmissibility. But if the I-94 is approved, the approved stay will be from the day your I-94 expired. The maximum extension you can apply for is 6 months. And the maximum you can stay in the U.S. with a B1/B2 visa is 1 year.
Note: You must actually leave North America for it to be considered that you’ve left the United States. This means you cannot just travel to Mexico or Canada and then come back to receive a new I-94.
As long as you are not in violation of the terms of your visa and you have not violated the law, you will not be penalized for applying for a green card just for applying for a visa extension.
If your authorized stay has expired and you are filing for an extension you will need to prove the following:
- The delay was caused by extraordinary circumstances that were outside your control;
- The length of the stay was reasonable;
- You have not violated your nonimmigrant status (visitors are not allowed to work);
- You have not filed an immigrant petition and you are still considered a “non-immigrant”;
- You are not being deported from the United States.
Hiring the best attorney for your immigration case can prove pivotal in your life, much like a marriage. A licensed lawyer is authorized and qualified to assist you with your immigration case or green card application. Unlike consultants, attorneys have completed extensive education and training before being licensed to represent clients. Just like a life partner, you want an attorney you can trust, communicate with, and relate to. Most importantly, you want an attorney who knows how to successfully proceed with your case so that you achieve the desired outcome. While many legitimate community and religious organizations provide immigration-related services, there are those who advertise as legal “consultants” or “notarios publicos” but are not authorized or qualified to help with immigration law-related matters. You face a big challenge, the power of the United States government. Don’t face it alone. Contact a San Diego Extension of Stay Lawyer at Superior Immigration Lawyers.