Obtaining status in the U.S. is a three-step process involving several government agencies, each with their own policies and requirements. In this article we provide a condensed version of the steps associated with obtainingemployment-based nonimmigrant status.
Step One: The proposed employer files a petition for nonimmigrant worker with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (“CIS”). A CIS Adjudications Officer determines that the employer and applicant qualify for the category requested and upon approving the petition, issues a formal approval notice (Form I-797). To view a sample of an I-797 click here.
Step Two: The applicant must appear before the Department of State (“DOS”) at a U.S. Consulate or Embassy with evidence of CIS’s approval and apply for a nonimmigrant visa. The DOS verifies the information and conducts security checks on the applicant before issuing a visa. Please note, in most instances, this does not apply to Canadian citizens. For further information on applying for a U.S. visa click here.
Step Three: The individual may then appear at a port-of-entry with their valid visa issued by DOS and evidence of their CIS approval and apply for admission from Customs and Border Protection. A CBP Inspector will issue the applicant an I-94 card which denotes their nonimmigrant classification and period stay Form I-94 is what actually grants status.
Berardi Immigration Law will be supplementing this article with more detailed explanations regarding the differences between” visas” and “status” as well as the terms overstay, out-of-status and unlawful presence.
Rosanna Berardi is adept at filing many different types of nonimmigrant petitions with CIS, scheduling visa appointments, and providing guidance for port-of-entry procedures. We would be happy to assist you. Please contact us by calling 877-721-6100 or send an e-mail by clicking here.