I came to the U.S. as a visitor in B-2 status to visit a friend and to do some sightseeing together. A couple of months into my visit, I decided to get a graduate degree from a U.S. school. …

… I obtained an I-20 form and applied for change of status to F-1. My application is still pending. The program starts next week and my B-2 status will expire around the same time. What do I need to do to comply with immigration law until the USCIS issues a decision on my application for change of status?


Because you are not allowed to start school until your application is approved, your DSO should defer your program start date until the next available term. You must make sure that no more than 30 days elapse between the end of your B-2 status and the start of your F-1 status (which is based on the deferred program start date). Therefore, you should file a timely application to extend your B-2 status while you are still waiting for a decision on your application. It is advisable to consult with an immigration attorney before you take any action in this situation, however, since there may be additional timing and logistical issues that you also need to take into account. (14.Apr.2017)

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