4 prerequisites for a visa extension application
Many visa holders wish to extend the time they are permitted to stay in the United States, but simply staying past the term of your visa can lead to an array of legal issues. One way to safely prolong your trip is to get an approved extension of your visa. Doing so may be difficult, but there are several qualifying reasons a foreign national may be eligible. Consider these four prerequisites if you are thinking about applying for an extension.
1. No terms of admission have been violated
The most obvious prerequisite for a visa extension is that the applicant be compliant with all terms and conditions of her or his visa. This is why it is important to apply for an extension 45 days or more before yours expires. If you do not, it may expire before you receive approval, and remaining in the country would constitute a violation. Be sure to adhere to all other conditions of your visa as well.
2. Your passport will remain valid through the extension
If you have not violated any terms of your visa, you may also be eligible to apply for an extension so long as your passport will remain valid through the period of extension that you are requesting. If not, you must renew your passport to be eligible for a prolonged stay. Typically, you can do this at your country’s consulate office that is nearest to you.
3. Your nonimmigrant visa status is still valid
Your eligibility for a visa extension will also be determined by your immigration status. If your visa is for a nonimmigrant, you must still be eligible for this type of visa. Whatever terms applied at the time of your initial admission will still be applicable, so you should be sure to verify that you satisfy all requirements before seeking an extension.
4. No crimes or infractions have been committed
One of the most important requirements for visa extension eligibility is that applicants not be suspected or convicted of committing any crimes during their time in the United States. In many cases, in fact, this can result in deportation regardless of the terms of your initial visa. If you want to stay in the United States, it is imperative that you obey the law.
There are many different reasons you might seek an extension on your visa, and there are many challenges you might face, too. Talking with an experienced attorney may help you navigate some of these challenges and understand the full scope of your options and rights.
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