Immigration Issues/Last Name Issue
QUESTION: I am a H1B holder from India. My full name is "Tony Paul Katers" , where the actual name is split up as first/middle/last name. My passport shows "Paul Katers" as Surname and "Tony" as the Givenname. My visa has been stamped as "Paul Katers" as Surname and "Tony" as Givenname. My I94 shows "Paul Katers" as Familyname and "Tony" as givenname. My I797 shows it correctly. But by some mistake my records were filed as "Tony" for firstname and "Paul Katers" as the lastname. This also caused my social security to be filed the same. I need to get this corrected as "Tony"-firstname, "Paul"-middlename, "Katers"-lastname in immigration / embassy, I94 and in all my US records . When I approached Social Security Office, they said that I need to get this corrected with the immigration. What would be the procedure to do this? Where should I approach to get this done? Is that just a record change or do i need to stamp my visa again. Would there be any other complications. I am planning to go back to India for visit and am concerned as to what I need to fill in I94 on returning. I have not yet applied for Green Card and am concerned to get all this corrected before going forward with any other applications. Please explain in detail. Thanks in advance.
ANSWER: Hi Tony,
I assume that your H-1B petition (I-129) was filled in properly with respect to the names. If there is an error on the I-797, the USCIS should correct it (including issuing you new I-94 at bottom of the approval notice. You will need to write the USCIS at the address on the I-797 approval notice and ask for replacement I-797 with I-94 showing correct name.
In addition, obtain correct name on passport from the nearest Indian Consulate. This may mean being issued either new passport, or a stamp somewhere in the passport from the Consulate which verifies your actual name.
In any future entries to the U.S., use your actual name on the I-94 (white card) when you enter the U.S. Also, in any future filings with the USCIS or the Department of Labor, use your actual name.
Ajay K. Arora, Esq.
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QUESTION: Thanks Ajay for the speedy response. But my I129 and I797B both appears to be showing the correct name. Apologize if I had not stated my issue clearly. The problem was due to a mistake I made while filling the forms DS-156 and DS-157 for the Consulate Visa Interview. I was a bit confused with the surname and lastname and had filled that so. I94 was also filled as "Paul Katers"-Familyname and "Tony"-Givenname. So I believe that my immigration records and I94 need to be corrected. Can this be done at a US Immigration office. How long would this procedure take. Should this be done before I go back to India such that I can fill the correct name "Katers"-Familyname, "Tony"-Givenname in I94. Please advice how to proceed.Thanks in advance.
You have mentioned that your passport specifies "Paul Katers" as your Surname and "Tony" as your given name. In order to correct your immigration records you must first correct the name in your passport to reflect "Katers" as your surname and "Tony" as your first name.
Once you have corrected your name in the passport, you can schedule an "Infopass" appointment online at the USCIS website and meet with an immigration officer to request an amendment to the I-94.
In the alternate, as mentioned earlier, use your actual name on Form I-94 (white card) when you enter the U.S. in the future.
Ajay K. Arora, Esq.