Change Status or Consular Process?


“I am currently in the US on B1/B2 visa and got accepted in a program and got my i20 form. what do you suggest apply for change of status or go back to my home country and apply there?”

ANSWER:

Try to change status, but you might be required to consular process anyway.

Sometimes you receive an I-797 approval notice for a visa (any visa), but without the change of status. This means you’re required to have it stamped before you can be on that status. Obviously that can only be done by returning to your country and making a visa appointment (i.e. consular processing). These situations typically happen when the USCIS agrees with the underlying eligibility for your visa (i.e. the school admission is in order), but they are unsure of your intent to immigrate and want you to go through an interview appointment to scrutinize this. So to your question of whether you should try for COS, the answer given the above explanation is that you have nothing to lose by trying for a COS. The worst they’ll say is ‘no’, or ‘yes but consular processed is required.’



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