A wonderful contribution from a fantastic friend of America Josh, Doug Smith! Doug recently extended his status in the US on his E3 Visa and wanted to share with the community how he's done that with an I-129 and through Premium Processing. Thanks so much, Doug!
BIG AND IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER – I AM NOT AN IMMIGRATION ATTORNEY, READER SHOULD MAKE THEIR OWN ASSESSMENT OF MY PERSONAL EXPERIENCE, I AM NOT OFFERING OR SELLING ANY ADVICE OF ANY KIND.
I live in California and was due to obtain my 6th E3R this month. Obviously, I was unable to get back to Australia due to cost and travel restrictions or go to another country as a 3rd country national (“TCN”) due to the US Embassies' inconsistent canceling of requests.
I did not go through an immigration attorney. Through research, I found there were 2 steps to follow,
- I-129 Petition for Non Immigrant Worker.
- I-907 Request for Premium Processing Service
The I-129 requested I file
- Completed I-129 form
- Cover letter from employer for extension of stay
- Copy of passport and current visa
- Current copy of I-94
- 3 months of pay slips
- Copy of my degree relevant to my employment
- Certified LCA
- The fee for this petition was $460.
The I-907 requested I file
- Completed I-907 form
Any supporting documents to add to the application, so I issued a copy of the same files from the I-129 (this was probably unnecessary but I wanted to be safe by sending the double up documents in case another department handled the I-129 from the I-907
The fee for this service was $2500.
After all the documents were completed I obtained separate bank checks (the name of a US bank needs to be on the check) and added them to the petition.
After sending the package by priority mail, I received a receipt by email from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security within 24 hours.
6 days later, I received an approval notice by email, the hard copy of the approval came a few days later by mail. The approval was for the dates listed on my LCA, which was a full 2 years and my I-94 has changed validity dates to match the extension dates.
On further research I have found I can travel on the extension visa providing I provide the approval notice, (I-797A, Notice of Action), visa, passport, and if it applies, a copy of form I-129S (approved) on entry to the US to prove my nonimmigrant status. But as a caution, I have not tested this yet.
America Josh note: I always strongly recommend speaking to an immigration attorney about all things immigration. Be careful trusting anything you read anywhere on the internet (including this website) and always seek professional help where possible for your unique situation.