Change Your Status From B to F1 & Extend Your Stay in the U.S.
B1 and B2 visas are the most common non-immigrant visas issued to foreign citizens coming to the U.S. for business or pleasure. If you were granted this type of visa, you probably know that period of your stay is only temporary. B1/B2 visa is issued initially for a duration long enough to allow you to conduct your visit, up to a maximum of six months, and can be extended for another six months. But don’t worry! If you want to stay in the U.S. longer, there’s an easy solution. Apply to SEVIS approved school and change your status to F1 visa.
F1 visas are issued for foreign students enrolled at accredited U.S. academic institutions, including language training program. With this type of visa, you must maintain the full course of study. Except for on-campus employment of 20 hours a week or less, you are generally not permitted to work in the U.S. without prior authorization from USCIS.
If you are already in the U.S. on a temporary non-immigrant visa and looking to change from your current status to an F-1 student visa status, you should first choose the institution where you want to study and fill out their international application form. Once your application is successful and you will obtain form I-20 from school official, you should apply for the change of status. Remember, that it’s prohibited to study with B1/B2 visa in the U.S., so you need to apply for the change to F1 visa status before enrolling to classes. Here’s the list of documents that you will need to submit:
- Form I-539
- Form I-20
- Valid Passport
- Original Bank Receipt for Application Fee
- I-901 SEVIS fee payment receipt
- I-94 card
- Letter explaining and requesting change of status
- Evidence of financial support (bank statements, proof of scholarship)
- Academic preparation evidence (diplomas, certificates, TOEFL score etc.)
- Evidence that you continue to maintain ties to your home country and proving your intent to depart the United States upon completion of the course of study
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