Change of Status from one Visa Category to Another


Clients frequently ask our immigration attorneys about Change of Status. Every day thousands of nonimmigrants temporarily enter the United States for a specific purpose such as business (e.g. a B-1 visa), studies (e.g. F-1, J-1, and M-1 visas), or pleasure (e.g. a B-2 visa). The first immigration document that a nonimmigrant receives at the border or other point of entry is Form I-94 (Arrival/Departure Record). When you entered the United States, a U.S. immigration inspector should have examined your passport and visa and then given you a USCIS Form I-94 (Arrival/Departure Record). This record should tell you (in the lower right-hand corner) when you must leave the United States. As a nonimmigrant, you can prove that you did not violate U.S. laws by turning in your USCIS Form I-94 to the proper authorities when you leave the country.

If you want to extend your stay in the United States, then you must ask for permission from the United States Immigration and Naturalization Service (USCIS) before your authorized stay expires. Proof that you are willing to follow U.S. immigration laws will be important if you want to travel to the United States as an immigrant or nonimmigrant in the future. If you break immigration laws, you may also become subject to removal (deportation).

Form I-94 serves as a proof of lawful admission to the United States. To apply to change nonimmigrant status you must have a proof that you were lawfully admitted into the United States with a nonimmigrant visa, your non immigrant status must remain valid, and you have not type of nonimmigrant visa see Nonimmigrant Visa

Please consult with an experienced immigration attorney to analyze your goals and situation and advise you on your eligibility to change and extend your nonimmigrant status. To find how much it will cost you to Change Status or Extend Status, please see our schedule of fees