TN Visa Extension
There are generally two (2) options for current TN Visa holders to consider when requesting a TN Visa Extension. (1) File for a TN Visa Extension of Status with USCIS (2) Depart the United States and apply for a TN Visa Extension with CBP when returning to the United States. We discuss the options for a TN Visa Extension of Status in more detail below:
The standard requirements for filing a TN Visa Extension of Status by mail with USCIS through Form I-129 are:
- No Consideration is Given to Previous Approvals. When you file for a TN visa extension USCIS will adjudicate the petition from scratch. This means they will not take into account previous approvals. It is important that all filing carry the same weight and attention to detail as the initial filing.
- Evidence that the TN visa holder has maintained their TN visa status.
- Evidence that the TN visa holder will continue to be employed under a qualifying TN visa profession.
- Evidence that that TN visa holder continues to meet the minimum requirements for the TN visa profession.
- Timely Filing. Applications that are filed before the expiration of the current TN visa status are considered timely. In some circumstances USCIS may forgive an untimely filing due to extraordinary circumstance beyond the control of the applicant.
- Filing Window. You can file for a TN Visa Extension with USCIS up to 6 months in advance of the potential start or extension date.
You must be physically present in the United States when you file for a TN visa extension of status with USCIS and must remain in the United States while the case is processing. Departing before the case has been adjudicated is considered abandonment and will lead to a denial.
Automatic 240 Day Extension
- If you timely file for a TN visa extension of status with USCIS you are able to remain in the United States and work for your current employer for up to 240 days beyond the expiration of your current TN visa.
- The 240 day extension ONLY applies to timely filed TN visa Extension applications.
- The 240 day extension does NOT apply if you did not file before the expiration of your current TN visa or within the 10 day grace period. In some case USCIS will consider late filings due to extraordinary circumstances outside of your control.
- The 240 day extension does NOT apply to TN Visa Change of Employer applications.
Standard processing for a TN visa Extension with USCIS can take several months. In some situations it makes send to file for expedited processing. Expedited processing promises a decision from USCIS within 15 calendar days. You must pay and additional premium if you choose expedited processing.
Upon approval from USCIS you will receive an I-797 Approval notice with a new I-94 card attached. The approval will be for the time period requested from 1 day and up to 3 years. Although this extension allows Mexican citizens to continue to work in the United States, it does NOT extend their travel authorization. With the exception of qualifying trips of less than 30 days to Canada or Mexico, a Mexican citizen will need to obtain a new TN visa stamp at the U.S Consulate or Embassy.
TN Visa dependents on TD visas can jointly file for an extension of their TD Visa status with USCIS through USCIS Form I-539 Application to extend status.
You are able to obtain a TN visa extension at qualifying U.S. ports of entry and pre-flight inspection. This is done in the very same way as the initial TN visa was obtained. Things to consider when filing a TN Visa Extension with CBP:
- No Consideration is Given to Previous Approvals. When you file for a TN visa extension with CBP they will adjudicate the application from scratch. This means they will not take into account previous approvals. It is important that all applications carry the same weight and attention to detail as the initial application Be prepared to reprove your merit.
- Fast. You are able to obtain the TN visa extension the same day you apply with CBP.
- Low processing fees. When requesting a TN visa extension with CBP you only pay the nominal processing fees.
- Canadian citizens are able to request a TN visa extension with CBP typically within 10 days of the anticipated start date.
Richards and Jurusik U.S. Immigration Lawyers have extensive experience with TN visas, including TN visa extension applications with USCIS and CBP. If you are a Canadian or Mexican citizen, and need a TN Visa extension, we can help.