I have been admitted into a graduate program in information technology. My new DSO issued me an I-20 form to change my status from H-4 to F-1. …

… Unfortunately, my H-4 I-94 has recently expired and I did not file an extension application. May I still file an application for change of status from H-4 to F-1? If not, may I apply for an F-1 visa in Canada to come back in valid F-1 status?


Unfortunately, as you are no longer in valid nonimmigrant status, you are not eligible to apply for change of status in the U.S. and would have to travel outside the U.S. to apply for an F-1 visa. Additionally, because you overstayed your I-94, you started accruing unlawful presence as of the expiration date of your I-94. Because of that, from now on you have to travel to your home country to apply for any nonimmigrant visa. Even if you were not unlawfully present and you were able to apply in a third country such as Canada, you may be asked to travel to your home country to apply for the visa. This is because consulate officers there would be in a better position to determine whether you have sufficient ties to your home country to be eligible for the F-1 visa. (19.Dec.2014)

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