(a) Change of status on Form I-129.
An employer seeking the services of an alien as an E-1, E-2, H-1A, H-1B, H-2A, H-2B, H-3, L-1, O-1, O-2, P-1, P-2, P-3, Q-1, R-1, or TN nonimmigrant, must, where the alien is already in the U.S. and does not currently hold such status, apply for a change of status on Form I-129. The form must be filed with the fee required in § 103.7 of this chapter and the initial evidence specified in § 214.2 of this chapter and on the petition form. Dependents holding derivative status may be included in the petition if the form is for only one worker. In all other cases, dependents of the worker should file on Form I-539.
(b) Change of status on Form I-539.
Any nonimmigrant who desires a change of status to any nonimmigrant classification, other than those listed in paragraph (a) of this section, or to E-1 or E-2 classification as the spouse or child of a principal E-1 or E-2, must apply for a change of status on Form I-539. The application must be filed with the fee required in § 103.7 of this chapter and any initial evidence specified in the applicable provisions of § 214.2 of this chapter, and on the application form. More than one person may be included in an application where the co-applicants are all members of a single family group and either all hold the same nonimmigrant status or one holds a nonimmigrant status and the co-applicants are his or her spouse and/or children who hold derivative nonimmigrant status based on the principal's nonimmigrant status.
(c) Special provisions for change of nonimmigrant classification to, or from, a position classified under
Each application for change of nonimmigrant classification to, or from, a position classified under section 101(a)(15)(A) or (G) must be filed on Form I-539 and be accompanied by a Form I-566, completed and endorsed in accordance with the instructions on that form. If the Department of State recommends against the change, the application shall be denied. An application for a change of classification by a principal alien in a position classified A-1, A-2, G-1, G-2, G-3, or G-4 shall be processed without fee. Members of the principal alien's immediate family who are included on the principal alien's application shall also be processed without fee.
(d) Special provisions for change of nonimmigrant classification from Q-2 classification.
Any alien classified as a Q-2 nonimmigrant, who requests a change to another nonimmigrant classification, must file Form I-539, with appropriate fee. Any spouse or minor children of the principal alien who are in the United States and who are also classified as either Q-2 or Q-3 nonimmigrants may be included in the application.
(e) Change of classification not required.
The following do not need to request a change of classification:
An alien classified as a visitor for business under section 101(a)(15)(B) of the Act who intends to remain in the United States temporarily as a visitor for pleasure during the period of authorized admission; or
An alien classified under sections 101(a)(15)(A) or 101(a)(15)(G) of the Act as a member of the immediate family of a principal alien classified under the same section, or an alien classified under sections 101(a)(15)(E), (H), (I), (J), (L), or (Q)(ii) of the Act as the spouse or child who accompanied or followed-to-join a principal alien who is classified under the same section, may attend school in the United States, provided that the principal alien or spouse or child maintain their nonimmigrant status.
(f) Approval of application.
If the application is granted, the applicant shall be notified of the decision and granted a new period of time to remain in the United States without the requirement of filing a separate application and paying a separate fee for an extension of stay. The applicant's nonimmigrant status under his new classification shall be subject to the terms and conditions applicable generally to such classification and to such other additional terms and conditions, including exaction of bond, which the district director deems appropriate to the case.
(g) Denial of application.
When the application is denied, the applicant shall be notified of the decision and the reasons for the denial. There is no appeal from the denial of the application under this chapter.
(h) Change to S nonimmigrant classification.
An eligible state or federal law enforcement agency (“LEA”), which shall include a state or federal court or a United States Attorney's Office, may seek to change the nonimmigrant classification of a nonimmigrant lawfully admitted to the United States, except those enumerated in § 248.2 of this chapter, to that of an alien witness or informant pursuant to section 101(a)(15)(S) of the Act by filing with the Assistant Attorney General, Criminal Division, Form I-539, Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status, with the appropriate fee, and Form I-854, Inter-Agency Alien Witness and Informant Record, with attachments establishing eligibility for the change of nonimmigrant classification.
If the Assistant Attorney General, Criminal Division, certifies the request for S nonimmigrant classification in accordance with the procedures set forth in 8 CFR 214.2(t), the Assistant Attorney General shall forward the LEA's request on Form I-854 with Form I-539 to the Commissioner. No request for change of nonimmigrant classification to S classification may proceed to the Commissioner unless it has first been certified by the Assistant Attorney General, Criminal Division.
In the event the Commissioner decides to deny an application to change nonimmigrant classification to S nonimmigrant classification, the Assistant Attorney General, Criminal Division, and the relevant LEA shall be notified in writing to that effect. The Assistant Attorney General, Criminal Division, shall concur in or object to that decision. Unless the Assistant Attorney General, Criminal Division, objects within 7 days, he or she shall be deemed to have concurred in the decision. In the event of an objection by the Assistant Attorney General, Criminal Division, the matter will be expeditiously referred to the Deputy Attorney General for a final resolution. In no circumstances shall the alien or the relevant LEA have a right of appeal from any decision to deny.
(i) Change of nonimmigrant status to perform labor in a health care occupation.
A request for a change of nonimmigrant status filed by, or on behalf of, an alien seeking to perform labor in a health care occupation as provided in 8 CFR 212.15(c), must be accompanied by a certificate as described in 8 CFR 212.15(f), or if the alien is eligible, a certified statement as described in 8 CFR 212.15(h). See 8 CFR 214.1(j) for a special rule concerning applications for change of status for aliens admitted temporarily under section 212(d)(3) of the Act and 8 CFR 212.15(n).
[36 FR 9001, May 18, 1971, as amended at 48 FR 14593, Apr. 5, 1983; 48 FR 41017, Sept. 13, 1983; 48 FR 44763, Sept. 30, 1983; 50 FR 25697, June 21, 1985; 59 FR 1466, Jan. 11, 1994; 60 FR 44271, Aug. 25, 1995; 65 FR 14779, 14780, Mar. 17, 2000; 65 FR 18432, Apr. 7, 2000; 67 FR 76280, Dec. 11, 2002; 68 FR 43921, July 25, 2003; 73 FR 61336, Oct. 16, 2008; 74 FR 26940, June 5, 2009]