While you may be enjoying your time spent in the United States, you cannot spontaneously extend your stay. This is because, upon your arrival to the country, a Customs Border Protection officer issued an authorized period of stay on your I-94 record. And if you are carrying a B-1 (i.e., temporary business visitor) or B-2 (i.e., tourist visa), this authorized period is likely set at 180 days. Read on to discover the consequences of overstaying your visa past these 180 days and how a seasoned Lyndhurst adjustment of status attorney at the Law Offices of Salvatore A. Falletta can help you take legal measures to avoid them.
What are the consequences of overstaying my B-1 or B-2 visa?
To reiterate, you must reference the expiration date disclosed on your Form I-94, Department of Homeland Security Arrival/Departure Record, attached to your non-immigrant visitor’s passport. This is to ensure that you are making travel arrangements, or application arrangements, accordingly. Otherwise, overstaying your B-1 or B-2 visa may come with the following serious legal consequences:
- You may be barred from changing your status or extending your stay in the United States, now and in the future.
- Your current visa may be automatically voided, and you may be unable to obtain a new visa anywhere besides your country of nationality.
- You may be deemed inadmissible into the United States for anywhere between three to 10 years, depending on the extent of your unlawful presence.
What can I do to avoid these legal consequences?
Though the legal consequences of overstaying your non-immigrant visitor visa may seem daunting, there are ways in which you may easily avoid them.
For one, you may make travel arrangements to depart the United States on or before the expiration date of your authorized period of stay. With this, it may be wise to document your departure (i.e., get your passport stamped, keep a copy of your boarding pass, etc).
On the other hand, in the chance that you wish to legally remain in the United States, then you may apply for an Extension of Stay, Change of Status, or Adjustment of Status. This may be done through Form I-539, Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status.
Of note, you must file your application before your authorized period of stay has terminated. This is because a pending application allows you to stay in the country in the meantime. What’s more, filling out this application may be more time-consuming than you initially expect. So the sooner you kickstart this, the better.
So when it comes to your application, there is no question that a competent Lyndhurst adjustment of status attorney is the best fit for you. Please contact the Law Offices of Salvatore A. Falletta at your earliest possible convenience.