Form I-539 General Guidance

Generally, you may apply to change to a new nonimmigrant status or extend your current status if you lawfully traveled to the United States on a temporary visa and were lawfully admitted, your temporary visa status remains valid, and you have not committed any crimes that make you ineligible to change your status.

Application Process

File Form I539, Application to Extend/Change Non-Immigrant Status with all accompanying filing fees and evidence. The form is specifically intended for the following applicants: Certain nonimmigrants to extend their stay or change to another nonimmigrant status; CNMI residents applying for an initial grant of status; F and M nonimmigrants to apply for reinstatement; and, Persons seeking V nonimmigrant status or an extension of stay as a V nonimmigrant.

Filing Deadline
your application for an extension of stay about 45 – 60 days before your authorized stay expires. If filing a late change/extension of stay, the following must be proven: Your delay in filing was due to extraordinary circumstances beyond your control; The length of the delay was reasonable; You have not done anything else to violate your status such as working without authorization; You intend to remain in the United States temporarily (there are some exceptions to this rule); and You are not in removal proceedings

Categories Not Eligible for Change of Status

to change your nonimmigrant status if you were admitted to the United States in the following categories: Visa Waiver Program (VWP), Crew member (D nonimmigrant), In transit through the United States without a visa (TWOV), Certain spouses of U.S. citizens or dependent children (K-3 or K-4 nonimmigrant), Fiance of a U.S. citizen or dependent of a fiance (K-1 or K-2 nonimmigrant), or Informant (and accompanying family) on terrorism or organized crime (S nonimmigrant)

Pending Decision

Until you receive approval from USCIS, do not assume your request for a change in nonimmigrant status has been approved, and do not change your activity in the United States.

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