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Can I File a Change of Status Petition During my Grace Period?

By March 29, 2023Immigration
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If you are in the U.S. on a TN visa, E-1 visa , E-2 visa, E-3 visa, H-1B visa, L-1 visa, or O-1 visa, you will have a 60-day Grace Period after your employment is terminated (this applies if either you or the employer terminated the employment). During the grace period, you can stay in the U.S. (you cannot work) and you can also file a change of status petition to a different immigration status.

I-94 expiration v. Grace period – which one controls?

One important thing to remember is that you can stay in the U.S. for 60 days after your employment is terminated or until your I-94 expires – whichever is shorter.


Your I-94 expires on June 15 and your employment is terminated on June 1. You would only be able to stay in the U.S. until June 15 and not until July 31 (when the 60 day period is up).

Can I file a Change of Status petition during my Grace period?

Yes. You can file a Change of Status petition during your grace period. USCIS has to receive the Change of status petition before the 60-day period is up for you to be able to stay in the U.S. while the change of status petition is pending.


You were in the U.S. on a TN visa but your employment was terminated. Your I-94 does not expire for another year, so you have 60 days in grace period. You decided that after all the years you have been working in the U.S., you want to spend some time in the U.S. as a tourist and travel around the U.S. and visit National Parks in the next couple of months. Can you file a Change of status petition from TN to B2?

Yes. You would need to file Form I-539 and include Supporting documentation explaining what your planned activities are. It’s extremely important that USCIS receives your petition before your grace period is up – as long as it’s received in time, you can stay in the U.S. for the period you requested in the change of status petition.

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