Last Updated: November 16, 2013 at 10:20 am
Form I-539, Application To Extend/Change Non-immigrant Status, is the USCIS form that must be filed by a non-immigrant who seeks to extend his stay in America. Generally, non-immigrant visas are valid only for a certain period of time and the foreign nationals who hold these temporary non-immigrant visas will have to leave the country prior to the expiration of their authorized stay. Nevertheless, America permits non-immigrants to extend their stay and to change their status and to do so, they need to file Form I-539. However, at the time of filing this petition, their visas must be valid and they must not be out of status. If you hold a non-immigrant visa and if you look forward to extend your stay or to change your status, you may file this form. But see to that you file Form I-539, at least 45 days prior to the date of expiration of your authorized stay. If you fail to file the form at the right time, you will fall out of status and you will be subject to deportation.
You can easily file your Form I-539, Application To Extend/Change Non-immigrant Status, using our helpful step-by-step guide here or use the USCIS electronic immigration system (ELIS). The ELIS is the USCIS electronic immigration system and you just need to create an account to complete and file this USCIS form. This system will also enable you to pay the form filing fee electronically and to scan and upload the supporting documents directly into the system. USCIS ELIS is easy to use and this system will provide you with accurate information. Nevertheless, you need to ensure that you are eligible to extend your stay or to change your status, prior to filing your request.
Application Filing Process
To file Form I-539 online, you must go to the USCIS Electronic Immigration System (ELIS) login page and create a user account. After you login, you must select “Application to Extend/Change Non-immigrant Status”. This petition is simple and self explanatory and you need to first provide information about yourself including your name, address, biographic information, etc. You must then provide the USCIS account information and enter the 12 digit USCIS ELIS account number. You must enter your address and you need to provide your mailing address if your physical address and your mailing address are both different.
Followed by that, you will have to provide your date of birth and enter the name of your home country. You need to specify the immigration status you currently hold and information about your arrival/departure record and about your passport must be provided. You will then be directed to another page where you must select an option that best describes your intent. You must answer few questions and then upload the required supporting documents such as your passport and government issued identification documents, that establish your identity, into the system.
Form Filing Fee
After you complete the form, you must review the completed form and E-sign your petition. ELIS uses Pay.gov, and you can use this to pay the required form filing fee. After you pay the fee and you will receive a printable official confirmation receipt. You can print that receipt and you can also save a copy of the application that you have filed to your computer, for your records.