QUESTION: Hello, I woeld greatly appreciate any help you can give me on this matter as everyone i speak to at uscis tells me different things each time i call. Here is my story. I am a UK resident currently staying in Oregon USA on a B2 tourist visa. The actuall visa in my passport is valid for 3 years but when i arrived my I94 was only stamped for 6 months, this expired on April 19th 2007. I filed an I539 for extension of stay 8 weeks before my current I94 expired, but I am still waiting to hear about my case. USCIS are still only processing forms they recieved in DEC 06 and have told me i am looking at at least 4 months before they process my case. The problem is I have a family wedding to attend in June, flights were booked back to the UK more or less as soon as i arrived in the states, as we didnt know this process would take so long as it says you only need to file 45 days before your I94 expires on USCIS website. My question is i know i can go back to england without my I94 as that is where I am a legal citezen but after staying for 2 weeks for the wedding will i be able to come back to the states without an I94? Also will the fact that my I94 has expired whilst my case has been pending pose a problem when coming back to the states. Any help you could give me would be so appreciated, as i really have been looking forward to going back home to see family but now it looks as though i'm not going to be able to, due to really long processing times. USCIS should change there information on there website...it definately takes longer than 45 days!!
ANSWER: If you leave the country before it is approved, you will abandon your extension application. However, since you visa is good for 3 years, you can try to come back after the wedding without needing to go to the Embassy to get a new visa. However, when you come in, I would suggest bringing copies of the receipt for the extension, proving you did not overstay illegally. They may want to know why you are trying to come back so soon and whta your intentions are.
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QUESTION: Thank you so much for your reply, it is so nice to finally have a real answer! I just wondered if i could ask you for a little more information as you really know what your talking about and no one else seems to be able to give me any stright answers. I am actually hoping to stay in the States for around another 12 months, as my fiancee (also a uk citizen) is here working on an L1B visa and so I am staying with him, he supports me financially etc. I really want to go home in June to see family but DO NOT want to jepordise my chances of being allowed back into the states. In your opinion, if i did leave in june and come back to the states at the end of june what do you think the likelihood of me having problems are when passing through immigration at the airport. As if going home before my extension is approved is more than likely going to prevent me from re entering the states, i will not leave and will just wait around for this approval. I greatly appreciate your help, wish i had come across this website sooner.
Problem is there is no way for me to guarantee that you would not be met at the airport by an inspector that was in a bad mood and decides that you are staying here too long and are not staying at home longg enough between vists. It may not happen like this but I can not guarantee it. The safest way is to wait for the I-539 decision. The only problem with that is that thwe I-539 is not a high priority for thema nd they may not answer you before the date you requested for your extention. They expect you to leave by this date if you have not heard by then. I assume you did not ask for another 12 months, so you may have to leave before you wanted to or get married and then go for L-2.