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What is an I-94 Form? (And Why You Might Need It)

By May 1, 2024No Comments

What is an I-94 Form? (And Why You Might Need It)

Ever traveled to the United States? If you weren’t a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, you likely encountered a mysterious document called the I-94 Form. This blog post will shed light on what the I-94 is, why it’s important, and if you really need it.

What is an I-94 Form?

The I-94 is a “permit to enter the United States” and is sometimes referred to simply as “the permit”. This is a form that you must apply for in order to cross into the United States, as it is the proof that records your date of entry and exit of the country. Even if you have a valid visa, remember that the I-94 is a requirement in case you travel more than 25 miles from the border or your stay is longer than 30 days.

Who Needs an I-94 Form?

When crossing the U.S.-Mexico border by land, most visitors to the United States need an I-94 if they wish to go more than 25 miles or 40 km from the border, or stay more than 30 days in the United States. Be aware that if you do not apply for this permit, your visa may be cancelled and you may be deported from the US.

It is very important that you review your travel itinerary, because if you are crossing from Tijuana to San Diego and you are going to visit a destination that is more than 25 miles away, even if it is only for a couple of hours, you need an I-94.

This requirement, which is in addition to a valid visa and passport, applies to Mexican citizens or citizens of any other nationality, excluding Canada and the United States, who do not have a green card.

It serves as proof of your legal entry and authorized stay and you might need it for various purposes, such as:

  • Demonstrating your immigration status to employers, schools, or government agencies.
  • Verifying your admission information for future travel applications.
  • Replacing a lost physical copy of the form.

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This blog post is for informational purposes only and doesn’t constitute legal advice. For specific immigration guidance, consult with a qualified immigration attorney.

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