According to the Colombian Association of Travel and Tourism Agencies (Anato), one of the main destinations in the first half of 2023 for Colombians is the United States.
Generally, anyone who wants to visit that country must complete the process to obtain a tourist visa. It is valid for up to 10 years, however, Colombians can only stay for a maximum of 6 consecutive months.
Therefore, anyone who exceeds this period violates US immigration laws and may face the following penalties:
1. If it is from 1 to 180 days, it will enter the illegal category and it will affect future procedures.
2. If you stay 180 to 360 days longer than specified, you will be barred from entering for the next three years.
3. If you stay one year longer than allowed with a tourist visa, you will be barred from entering for the next 10 years.
In any case, your visa is revoked and there is a high possibility that you will be deported from the country.
Now, if you plan to extend the deadline, the right thing to do is to make a request to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services to extend the time.
To do this, you must enter the ‘USCIS ELIS’ platform and complete the I-539 form to request the extension.
Please note that making a request does not guarantee that you will be able to stay, as you must meet the following requirements:
1. Legally admitted to the United States with a nonimmigrant visa.
2. Visa status must be current.
3. Has not violated the conditions required for admission.
4. Has not committed any crime during the stay.
5. Get your passport validated, even at the time the extension is requested.
Keep in mind that the process can take up to 45 days.