Change of Status & Extension of Status

B1/B2 visa extension F1 change of status

Change of Status or Extension of Status in U.S. Immigration refers to the process of modifying or transforming a current nonimmigrant status within the United States. It can also refer to changing from one type of immigration status to another, such as from a B1/B2 tourist visa to an F-1 student visa; or extending a B1/B2 tourist visa longer than it was originally permitted. This process is undertaken by submitting an application with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

Chicago Immigration Lawyer

More questions? Please call 773-687-0549 or contact CIPOLLA LAW GROUP online for a consultation. We have over 30 years of combined experience helping foreign nationals with their immigration status. As one of the top 10 Immigration Lawyers, we have excellent approval and exceptional client satisfaction. We look forward to serving you.

Change of Status vs. Extension of Status

Change of StatusExtension of Status
Who? It is for someone who is in a non-immigrant visa status such as B1/B2 visa, F student visa, work visa etc…It is for someone who is in a valid non-immigrant visa status such as B1/B2 visa, work visa etc…
When? Must be filed before the expiration of your current visa.Must be filed before the expiration of your current visa, or as soon as you realized you need to extend your stay longer than permitted.
Where? Filed while you’re in the U.S. Filed while you’re in the U.S.
Leave the US? No. You can stay in the U.S. while your application is pending.Maybe. If you change your status from B1/B2 visa to a work visa, you will likely be required to leave the U.S. and reenter with a new visa.
Citizenship?NoNo

Change of Status and Extension of Status in Chicago, IL (U.S.)

The main difference between an extension of status and a change of status is the way in which the applicant obtains permission to remain in the United States. An extension of status is obtained by submitting a request to USCIS for an extension of an existing visa or authorization document. This can be done from within the United States, and does not require the individual to depart from and reenter under a new classification.

A change of status, on the other hand, is typically requested when someone wishes to change from their current nonimmigrant classification to another type of visa or authorization. In most cases, this also requires that the applicant leave and reenter under their new classification in order for USCIS to approve their request. There are some exceptions to this general rule, such as those who are seeking to change status from student to worker, but these are rare cases.

Therefore, an extension of status is mainly used for those who wish to stay in the United States beyond the expiration date of their current visa or authorization document without having to depart and reapply; while a change of status is generally used by those who wish to switch categories altogether. Both processes have specific requirements that must be met before approval can be granted by USCIS.

FAQs

Question:
If I apply for a tourist visa (B visa), will I be able to eventually obtain a green card?

Answer:
In short, yes. There are two major areas of immigration law, permanent resident and non-permanent resident immigration. Many of you know permanent residence to mean obtaining a green card, which can ultimately lead to United States Citizenship. Non-permanent residence (also known as a non immigrant visa) includes temporary visas such as tourist visas (B1 or B2 visa) or temporary work visas (H1-B temporary skilled worker visa), L1 Multinational Managers Visa, O visa or even fiancé visas (k1 visa) and spouse visas (k3 visas).

Temporary visas can sometimes be a good start to legally living in the United States before applying for permanent residence. For example, a fiancé visa can quickly lead to a conditional green card through marriage. A marriage visa can also lead to a green card. Some temporary work visas can lead to a employment based green card through proper planning and application. However, it is always important to keep the issue of “preconceived intent” in mind.

Chicago Immigration Lawyer

More questions? Please call 773-687-0549 or contact CIPOLLA LAW GROUP online for a consultation. We have over 30 years of combined experience helping foreign nationals with their immigration status. As one of the top 10 Immigration Lawyers, we have excellent approval and exceptional client satisfaction. We look forward to serving you.

Change of status from B visa to F1 student visa

In some visa applications such as tourist visas (B-2 Visa) the visa applicant’s intent must be such that they intend on returning home and do not intend on staying in the US. When an applicant tries to adjust status from a B2 visa (tourist visa) to a F1 Visa (Student visa), the USCIS will look very closely at the applicant’s intent at the time of filing for a tourist visa application. If the USCIS concludes that the B visa holder intended to gain admission to the U.S. as a student as opposed to visiting the U.S. as a tourist, the change of status to F-1 student status will be rejected and a visa fraud will be presumed.

Moreover, the timing of applying for a change of status application plays some significant role to the outcome of the change of status application. Sometimes, the later you file a change of status application upon entry on a tourist B visa, the more likely USCIS approves the application. On the other hand, if a request to change from B-2 to F-1 occurs within 60 days of entry into the US, USCIS will likely interpret the change of status as preconceived intent, thus denying the application.

Change of status from F1 Student visa to H1B visa

Another common preconceived intent is adjusting status from F-1 Student Visa status to permanent residence or green card status immediately upon entry into the US on a student visa. In contrast, a work visa such as a H1-B visa has “dual intent” allowing a H1-B holder to adjust status to lawful permanent resident status. Common ways to obtain a green card from an H1-B are through an employment based green card or marrying a US citizen and adjusting status as an immediate relative. Once you are a lawful permanent resident after waiting the requisite amount of time and complying with other necessary requirements you will eventually be able to naturalize to a US citizen.

The main point is that there is much interplay between non immigrant (temporary visas) and immigrant visas (permanent residence – green cards). Through proper planning and application, your immigration goals can be achieved, sometimes all at once, and sometimes one step at a time. But how you execute the plan is as important as the plan.

Chicago Immigration Lawyer

More questions? Please call 773-687-0549 or contact CIPOLLA LAW GROUP online for a consultation. We have over 30 years of combined experience helping foreign nationals with their immigration status. As one of the top 10 Immigration Lawyers, we have excellent approval and exceptional client satisfaction. We look forward to serving you.

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