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News and Updates

The latest immigration and visa news for the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, and select European countries - straight from the leading immigrant advocates in the Philippines.

Obligations of a visa holder

Being issued a visa is not the end but the beginning of an intended journey to the country of destination such as the United States. Know your obligations at a port of entry and even after being allowed into the country.

Crispin Aranda

Obligations of a visa holder

GOT YOUR VISA? KNOW BEFORE YOU GO.

Visas are documents issued by government agencies allowing the visa holder to present said document to an immigration officer at a port of entry.

Having a visa does not mean a person will be automatically allowed to enter a country say the U.S., Australia or the UK.

A visa is issued by a consular (or entry clearance officer -ECO in the case of the UK) based on information provided and/or documents presented by the visa applicant

An applicant for a visit visa for example would have presented evidence of access to funds for use for the duration of the intended temporary stay.

Getting paid for any kind of employment in the U.S. – including performing chores for relatives in exchange for accommodation – is a violation of the visitor visa.

The most common immigration violation of course is overstaying one’s stay.  Even if you hold a 10-year, multiple entry visa, however, the length of your stay in the U.S. is determined by the immigration officer.

In the U.S. and Canada, the default duration is six (6) months.  Before that initial authorized period of stay expires, and if further stay is being contemplated, then the visitor or student must submit a completed application for an extension of stay to avoid being the subject of deportation or removal.

For applying to extend stay in Canada, click this link - https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/visit-canada/extend-stay/eligibility.html

Visa Conditions for Visitors in Australia

These conditions will or might be attached to this visa:

8101 - No work

The visa holder cannot work in Australia.

8201 - Maximum 3 Months Study

8201 - Maximum 3 Months Study: While in Australia, the holder must not engage, for more than three months, in any studies or training.

8503 - No further stay

8503 - No further stay: The visa holder will not, after entering Australia, be entitled to be granted a substantive visa, other than a protection visa, while they remain in Australia.

8501 - Health cover

8501 - Health cover: The visa holder must maintain adequate arrangements for health insurance during their stay in Australia.

8531 - Must leave before visa expiry

8531 - Must leave before visa expiry: The holder must not remain in Australia after the end of the period of stay permitted by the visa.

8558 - Non Resident

8558 - Non Resident: Cannot stay for more than 12 months in any 18 month period.

U.S. State Department Official Info

(The following information is being shared as a public service as a reminder to visa applicants to and visa holders in the U.S.)

  • A U.S. visa in his/her passport gives a foreign citizen permission to apply to enter the United States. A visa by itself doesn’t authorize entry to the U.S.  A visa simply indicates that your application has been reviewed by a consular officer at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate, and that the officer determined you’re eligible to travel to a U.S. port-of-entry for a specific purpose. The port-of-entry can be an airport, a seaport or a land border crossing.
  • At the port-of-entry, a U.S. immigration officer of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) decides whether to allow you to enter and how long you can stay for any particular visit, as part of the Admission process. Only the U.S. immigration officer has the authority to permit you to enter the United States.

Admission to the United States and your Duration of Stay

Upon arriving at a port of entry, the CBP official will determine the length of your visit.

On the admission stamp or paper Form I-94, the U.S. immigration inspector records either an admitted-until date or "D/S" (duration of status). If your admission stamp or paper Form I-94 contains a specific date, then that is the date by which you must leave the United State. If you have D/S on your admission stamp or paper Form I-94, you may remain in the United States as long as you continue your course of studies, remain in your exchange program, or qualifying employment. The admitted-until date or D/S notation, shown on your admission stamp or paper Form I-94 is the official record of your authorized length of stay in the United States. You cannot use the visa expiration date in determining or referring to your permitted length of stay in the United States.

Extension of Stay

If you came to the United States on a nonimmigrant visa and you want to extend your stay you must apply with USCIS before your authorized stay, denoted on your admission stamp or paper Form I-94, expires. It is recommended you apply well in advance of your expiration date.

For the official USCIS/DHS Fact Sheet - click this link - https://www.uscis.gov/sites/default/files/USCIS/Resources/C1en.pdf

Important Note: Providing permission to enter and/or remain in the United States. to persons holding a nonimmigrant visa is not the responsibility of the Department of State, and therefore Visa Services is unable assist you in this regard. All inquiries must be directed to USCIS.

What if I Decide to Stay Longer and am Out-of-Status with the Department of Homeland Security?

  • You should carefully consider the dates of your authorized stay and make sure you are following the procedures. Failure to do so will cause you to be out-of-status.
  • Staying beyond the period of time authorized, by the Department of Homeland Security, and out-of-status in the United States, is a violation of U.S. immigration laws, and may cause you to be ineligible for a visa in the future for return travel to the United States. If you overstay the end date of your authorized stay, as provided by the CBP officer at a port-of-entry, or United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), your visa will generally be automatically be voided or cancelled, as explained above.” 

Authors & Contributors

Crispin Aranda

Crispin Aranda

Crispin R. Aranda is an established International Visa Conselor and Immigrant Advocate. He is the president of IVC and is in several migration radio programs.

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