B2 visa extension due to COVID-19, Indian passport expiring

My mom has come to the US on a tourist visa and her I-94 expires on the last week of April.

Due to the Corona Virus, travel restrictions have been imposed in our home country, India. Her Indian passport is expiring on May 10th, 2020. But we want her to stay beyond May 10th, 2020 to reduce the risk of COVID-19 as she is elderly.

I am aware that we should file I-539 to extend her stay. But in order to submit the online application, it requires a valid passport for the requested length of stay. I contacted Indian embassy regarding her passport renewal but they are not providing any assistance as they are closed now and don’t know when they are going to re-open.

  1. Can I immediately file I-539 to extend her stay beyond May 10th, 2020 by explaining the situation regarding her passport renewal?
  2. Wait until April 15th hoping that Indian embassy will be able to assist regarding her passport renewal and apply for an extension at that time?
  3. Is there any other way to extend her stay beyond May 10th, 2020?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

You would need a valid passport.

If you file without a valid passport, the chances of denial or an RFE are very high.

I think you have time to wait till April 15 and see if Indian embassy can renew passport using Tatkal service.

I have asked for help with this question on all our groups. I hope someone can share what they did if they are in similar situation.

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I am facing the same issue except the passport expiry problem and I do think it is a better choice to try to obtain a new passport and apply.

Question to Anil: i am hearing rumor that USCIS might not approved I593 in this situation. Is it true? Or is it just rumor. Have you seen any recent cases where B2 is extended for elderly people? My parents’ I94 will expire on May 20. When is a good time to apply? Shall I apply online or submit paper application?

There is no official confirmation from USCIS about anything till today.

I am hoping that USCIS will approve these applications as it is a real emergency and people cannot travel. You are not alone. There thousands of people who are filing B2 extensions.

In my opinion, it is okay to stay and file extension even if USCIS may deny it later as it is a life and death situation. USCIS can only deny the application later and it is okay. Its not the end of the world.

It is important to safeguard your parent’s life first and then think about visa status.

I think they are accepting passport renewal if it’s an emergency situation. See above.

My friend’s India passport is expiring in Sept 2020 with valid h1b till Jan 2021and looks like CKGS is not accepting applications for renewal of passport now.

question is can some way stay in USA with expired passport itself? Would be an issue for extension if does not get passport renewal before Filing for extension

USCIS needs a valid passport along with your extension application.

Try sending an email to Indian embassy if it is an emergency.

Hello Anil,

Thank you very much for the quick reply. I sent an email to Atlanta Indian Embassy emergency email last week to find out the procedure but I received below reply:

Due to spread of COVID19 all passport related services have been discontinued. Applications are not being accepted even by postal mail.

I sent an email again this week but haven’t received any reply yet. I sent another email today. At present just waiting for their assistance.

Ohh my god. Indian embassy and their services are really useless. Looks like their meaning of emergency is something else!

We are in the same situation can you tell me what did you do

Any update on the process?