Valid I94, L2 to H4 COS not filed - illegal?

Arnab Sen

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I need to understand whether my wife stayed illegally in the US.

I was in the US on L1A and my wife on L2.  She was last admitted into the US in March 2019. Her I-94 had an expiry date of April 2020.

I had an approved H1B visa petition (consular processing) and I went to Mexico to get it stamped and re-entered the US on July 26 2019.  My wife didn't accompany me to Mexico and stayed back in the US.  She left the US on Oct 22 2019, 88 days after I switched from L1A to H1B, to go for stamping H4.

Was her stay in the US between July 26 and October 22 2019 illegal/out of status that could be considered as a negative point while applying for a visa?


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How here's the bouncer.  She went for H4 stamping and was handed a 221G asking her to submit an "approved H4 petition".  There is no such thing as "H4 petition".  The closest thing is I539 for change/extension of status, but it does not apply to her because she is no longer within the US.

My lawyer has written to her explaining that she cannot apply for H4 I539 because she is not in the US.  My question is, if the officer refuses to accept her mistake that she didn't know such basic USCIS rules even after being a visa officer, and keeps acting dumb, say by replying something like, "no, the only way we can grant her H4 is if she can submit an approved H4 petition", then what options do I have? Is there is a higher platform of appeal?

Edited by Arnab Sen
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