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US Immigration Forms
Finding a job in the US is a dream for millions of people worldwide. Besides that, there are hoards of tourists who visit the country every day. Everyone who enters the US requires a non-immigrant or an immigrant visa.
The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is responsible for issuing these visas. All US immigration and non-immigration visas start with the Letter "I," followed by numbers. If you are applying for a US visa, you should know that none of the forms directly grant a US visa. However, once approved, you can use these forms to stay or extend your stay in the US. These US immigration forms also authorize you to work in the US.
Below is a list of the most important US immigration forms you may encounter before making your journey to the US. Let's unravel each form, its purpose, and the procedure to fill it correctly.
1.DS-160: The Online Non-immigrant Visa Application
For temporary travel to the United States, you need to fill out the DS-160 online nonimmigrant visa application form. Here are the top features of the DS-160:
DS-160 form filling and the process:
Filling the DS160 Form online is a simple task. Nevertheless, you must take extra care to ensure the form is filled out correctly. You must:
Also Read: What is i-94?
2. Form I-94 Arrival / Departure record
I-94 Form is the DHS Arrival/Departure Record issued to foreigners applying for an Extension, Change of Status, or other things. Given below are the salient features of Form I 94:
The USCIS issues a new Form I-94 or another documentation if you choose to extend your stay in the US by obtaining a Green Card.
The electronic Form I-94 is issued by the US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to those arriving by air or sea. You will also receive a stamp on your passport showing that you entered the country legally. You can also visit the CBP official website to view your travel records and download or print a copy for your records.
2. Paper form
The paper version of Form I-94 is issued to foreigners arriving by land. It is in the form of a small white card attached to the visitor's passport. The US Government tracks your entry and exit from the country with your Form I-94. Hence, it is mandatory to submit your paper Form I-94 when leaving the US.
The process to obtain an electronic and paper I-94 travel record:
The CBP officer will review the I-94 at the entry point of the US, retain the top half and return the bottom half of the I-94, which is the departure record.
3. Form I- 765 Application for Employment Authorization
The Employment Authorization Document or EAD is also known as a work permit. Issued by the USCIS, the EAD is proof that you are legally permitted to work in the US. The EAD application is known as I-765 Form. Foreigners (especially dependents) may file Form I-765 to obtain an EAD and work while they are in the US.
The EAD is a credit-card-sized plastic card with enhanced, non-duplicable multiple-security coding.
The EAD is issued in the following categories:
The I-765 form filling and the process
To fill I 765 Form, you should:
4. Form I-129F: Petition for Alien Fiancé
U.S. citizens who want their foreign fiancé to come to the United States to get married must fill out the USCIS I-129F form. If your Form I-129F petition is approved, the sponsored fiancé or spouse will need a visa, an interview, and then enter the U.S. to obtain a green card. After the couple is married, the foreigner can "adjust status" to acquire their Green Card.
Who all can submit Form I-129F:
The I-129F Petition filing and the process and document list
To file Form I-129F, you need the following documents:
If you are a US citizen wishing to file Form I-129F, you should:
The USCIS will send a notification about the approved petition to the US Consulate or Embassy where the fiance lives. The fiance should:
5. Form I-797: Notice of Action
This Form is primarily a communication form between the USCIS after submitting any immigration application to the agency. I-797 is generally applied by the sponsoring employee on behalf of the foreign worker.
Important aspects of Notice of Action:
Request for Evidence
To notify about a scheduled appointment.
As far as Form I-797 is concerned, you must:
Types of Form I-797
Form I-797 comes in seven categories, each depending on the type of immigration application submitted and the stage of the process.
1. the USCIS sends Form I-797 Notice of Action to notify them that they have received your application.
2. Form I-797A Notice of Action for Replacement of I-94
For I-94 Extension, adjustment of status, and change in residential address.
3. Form I-797B Approval of Alien Worker Petition
Receiving an I-797B denotes that your I-140 Immigration Petition for Alien Worker is approved. However, the I-797B should come with a new I-94. If not, you may have to return to your home country and get your visa stamped.
4. Form I-797C Important Follow-up Information
This form informs you of scheduled appointments, rejection, reopening of a case, or transfer.
5. Form I-797D Benefit Card may come with a Green Card or an EAD, depending on your application.
6. Form I-797E Request for Evidence.
Popularly known as RFE, the USCIS sends this form if it requires additional information to process your visa application.
7. Form I-797F Transportation Letter
Form I-797F allows applicants to travel overseas and comes with instructions specific to your case.
Also Read: What is I-797?
6. Form I-539 Change or Extend Non-Immigrant Status Application
All US immigrant visas come with an expiry date. However, Form I-539 comes to your rescue if you want to extend your stay in the US or switch to another visa. Non-immigrants are advised to apply for extensions to their stay at least 45 days before their current visa expires.
I- 539 Form filling and the process
To file an I 539 Form, you will need the following:
Important tips to fill out Form I-539
Always refer to the USCIS official website before filling in any information because the portal includes information that asks you to:
Kindly follow all the instructions and attach the required documents to ensure a smooth and hassle-free application process.
Visit our TechFetch H1B website for detailed insights about US immigration policies and procedures.
**Disclaimer : All US immigration policies and procedures are subject to change. Kindly refer to the USCIS official website for more information.**