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How long can Canadian citizens stay in the U.S. after TN visas expire?

My wife and I are Canadian citizens who are living in the U.S. on TN visas. We filed an I-526 application 29 months ago and it is still pending. Our current TN visas will expire soon. After they expire, how long of a grace period do we have? Can we simply cross the border, come back to the U.S. as tourists and stay here for another six months? Will our pending EB-5 application impact our ability to enter the border as tourists?

Answers

  • Avatar

    Salvatore Picataggio

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    I generally do not recommend re-entering as a visitor quickly after another non-immigrant status ends. An I-526 petition by itself may get you some extra questions about your intent for entering.

  • Avatar

    Bernard P Wolfsdorf

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    There is no grace period. You need to leave or change to another status. After 180 days you could trigger a bar when you leave.

  • Avatar

    Marko Issever

    EB-5 Broker Dealer
    Answered on

    Yes, it might. That is why you should renew your TN before it expires and avoid becoming out-of-status. Since you have already declared your immigrant intent via the I-526 petition you have already filed, if you leave the U.S. before extending your TN status, you might be denied re-entry to the U.S. as a tourist. It will be hard to convince the officer on the border that you are entering for "touristic purposes", only and that you intend to return to Canada.

  • Avatar

    BoBi Ahn

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Upon the completion of your work in the U.S. under TN status, you have a reasonable time to either depart the U.S. or file to change employer or status within a reasonable time frame. Usually within 30 days. Sooner the better.

  • Avatar

    Lynne Feldman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Best would be to renew the TN. To obtain a visitor status, the CBP officer must believe you intend to return home, which will be tough with an I-526 pending. But if set up for immigrant visa processing, this may work.

  • Avatar

    Charles Foster

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Better to file for an extension of your TN status and not to go out of status. It may be denied re-entry as a tourist on the grounds you are not bona fide visitors, as you intend to immigrate to the U.S.

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