For the past few weeks, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency (“CBP”) of the Department of Homeland Security has been phasing out its process related to Form I-94 for international arrival and departure tracking. CBP is replacing the old system with a new automated electronic system for tracking international travel by air or sea.
This step forward is expected to streamline the process of international travel, especially entry into the U.S., while facilitating greater security and reducing costs.
Foreign visitors arriving in the U.S. via air or sea at designated ports are now able to access their CBP arrival/departure records online, and use that information when dealing with employers, schools and government agencies who might need to verify those records. The first group of air and sea ports to enjoy the benefits of this updated system include specified facilities in:
- Charlotte, NC;
- Chicago, IL;
- Houston, TX;
- Las Vegas, NV;
- Miami, FL; and
- Orlando. FL.
However, CBP is still issuing and requiring paper Form I-94 at other designated ports and at all land border points of entry. The Form I-94 automation process will continue to be phased in at other air and sea ports over time.
Under the new process, a CBP officer will stamp the travel document of each arriving non-immigrant traveler, showing by means of the stamp, the admission date, the class of admission, and the date through which the traveler is permitted to stay. Travelers will also get from CBP a flier notifying them that they can use CBP.gov/I94 to check and confirm their admission records.
Travelers will not do anything differently upon exiting the U.S. at this time; however, they may notice that CBP will increasingly record their departures solely by electronic means provided by the transportation carrier or by CBP.
If you are traveling to or from the U.S and have questions about required travel authorizations or paperwork required by U.S. immigration laws, please do not hesitate to contact our office at (847) 564-0712 for an appointment to speak with an experienced and qualified immigration lawyer. You can also check out our immigration law Website for more information about how we might assist you.