Jason met Mihaela* nearly two years ago while she was on shore leave in Miami.
For the past few years, Mihaela, who’s originally from Romania, has worked as a crew member for a chartered sailboat business based in the U.S. Sailboats take passengers to ports around the world. Born in Miami, Jason now lives and works in Silicon Valley.
Mihaela sees Jason every chance she gets. She visits the U.S. on a B-2 visitor visa for pleasure, which is issued together with the B-1 visitor visa for business as a B-1/B-2 visa. The B-1/B-2 visa can be valid anywhere from one month to 10 years. It allows for single or multiple entries for a maximum stay of six months. When Mihaela and Jason met, Mihaela had a B-1/B-2 visitor’s visa that was valid through 2019.
Like other long-distance couples, Mihaela and Jason keep in touch with phone and video calls, photos, and texts between visits, But unlike most long-distance couples, Jason cannot fly due to his history of seizures. So, Mihaela always came to Silicon Valley to reunite with Jason.
Last year, Mihaela returned to the U.S. three times, staying anywhere from two weeks to nearly six months. Each time she left the U.S. on or before the date she was supposed to.
However, earlier this year, Mihaela applied for a new B-1/B-2 visa, allowing enough time—and any potential delays—before her visa expired next year. Nearly a month later, the U.S. Consulate denied her visa, stating in a letter that the reason was for “administrative processing and/or additional clearances.”
Mihaela told Jason what happened—and that it could take some time before she got her visa situation figured out. Jason didn’t want to just stand by and wait. He wanted to help Mihaela, so he contacted the Alcorn Immigration Law team.
Resolving the Mystery
We had a long discussion with Mihaela and Jason about Mihaela’s immigration history and their goals.
At first, we weren’t sure why her visa had been revoked. But then we noticed that upon one of her departures, her I-94 card was never collected. Form I-94 is issued to immigrant travelers at ports of entry upon entering the U.S. and collected upon exiting the U.S., recording arrivals and departures. It remained stapled in her passport. That meant one of Mihaela’s departures from the U.S. by sailboat last year probably failed to get recorded by U.S. customs. We determined that Mihaela’s visa may have been revoked based on the mistaken belief that she had overstayed a visit to the U.S. last year.
We contacted the U.S. Consulate where Mihaela had applied for her most recent visa, and the one that had revoked her previous visa. Through our correspondence and proving to the Consulate that Mihaela had never actually violated U.S. immigration laws, we were able to clear up the discrepancy quickly.
She received a new B-1/B-2 visa. And last month, Mihaela sailed back to the U.S. and reunited with Jason.
The Alcorn Immigration Law team helps highly-motivated investors, founders, talent, and families obtain visas, green cards, and citizenship. Talk to us if we can help you, an employee or a loved one. We can help individuals whether they are inside or outside of the U.S.
* To maintain confidentiality, the name of the client has been changed, and details may have been omitted or slightly altered. Our success in a case does not predict nor guarantee the outcome in your legal matter. The result portrayed above was dependent on the facts of that case. Results will differ based on different facts.