Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Your M-1 Student Visa

Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Your M-1 Student Visa

Will I have to pay a fee to apply for an M student visa?
You will have to pay a non-refundable application fee. This means that if your visa does not get approved, you will not get your money back.

Can I stay in the United States if my student visa has expired?

Yes, as long as you are student in good standing and have not violated your status, you may legally remain in the United States with an expired M-1 visa. As an M-1, you may stay for up to one year from the date you arrive in the United States, also according to your information contained in SEVIS.

Can I renew my student visa while in the United States?

No. For more information about visa applications visit the Department of State website at http://travel.state.gov/. If you need to stay longer than one year to complete your program of study, you may work with your school official to apply for an extension with USCIS.

Can I renew my visa while outside the United States in a country other than my home country?

Yes, but the Department of State recommends that you apply for a visa in your home country. For more information about visa applications visit the Department of State website at http://travel.state.gov/.
Before you travel to a country other than yours to renew your visa, contact the U.S. embassy or consulate.
If you exit the United States and apply for a visa, you cannot return to the United States until the visa is issued. This could require a lengthy stay. If the visa is denied, you will not be able to return to the United States as a student.

Can I go to Canada or Mexico and apply for a new visa?

In some cases, you can. Contact the individual U.S. embassy or consulate in Canada or Mexico. However, you cannot return to the United States until your visa is issued. If the visa is denied, you will not be able to return to the United States as a student. For more information about visa applications visit the Department of State website at http://travel.state.gov/. You can also visit www.nvars.com, the site that provides appointments for consulates in Canada and Mexico.

Applying for a new visa is not the same as automatic visa revalidation. You cannot apply for a new visa and take advantage of automatic visa revalidation at the same time.

What is automatic visa revalidation?

Automatic visa revalidation allows most M-1 students to take a trip of less than thirty days to countries contiguous to the United States and reenter on an expired visa provided you have proper documentation and have not applied for a new visa during the visit. This process revalidates your visa (making it eligible for the single trip), but does not renew it. For more information on automatic visa renewal, please read our article here. [LINK TO AUTO VISA RENEWAL]

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