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Judith
Judith, Immigration Lawyer
Category: Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 28197
Experience:  34 years as practicing immigration attorney, with non-immigrant and immigrant visa experience.
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I am a citizen of Argentina and I'm in the US on an F1

Customer Question

I am a citizen of Argentina and I'm in the US on an F1 student visa.
I also have a Spanish passport because I have dual Spanish and Argentina citizenship.
Currently, my F1 is expired but I have duration of status because I'm about to start a grad school program. In order to get an F1 renewal which is what I really need (I have my I-20 and everything I need to do my renewal) I am being told I need to go to the US Consulate in Argentina to do the paperwork necessary.
I would like to travel on vacation to Paris.
If I go on my Argentinian passport when I return from Paris into the US, I believe they wouldn't let me in because the F1 is expired.
If I go on my Spanish passport and return on the Spanish passport I believe I will be in the US on a tourist visa.
So my question is, is there any way for me to go to Paris on vacation without going to Argentina to renew my F1?
- Can I get an F1 renewal in the US without going to Argentina and/or can I travel on my Spanish passport without jeopardizing my F1 duration of status?
Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: Immigration Law
Expert:  Judith replied 4 months ago.

Hello my name is ***** ***** I am delighted to answer your questions today. I have 35 years experience as an immigration lawyer.

If I go on my Argentinian passport when I return from Paris into the US, I believe they wouldn't let me in because the F1 is expired.
Correct
If I go on my Spanish passport and return on the Spanish passport I believe I will be in the US on a tourist visa.
You would be on a tourist status using the ESTA which allows you to be here for up to 90 days and you may NOT do a change of status when entering with ESTA.
So my question is, is there any way for me to go to Paris on vacation without going to Argentina to renew my F1?
As a citizen of Spain you could try to get your student visa stamp in Spain. The problem is that you have no ties to Spain as you have one with Paris other than being a citizen of Spain. The consul are required to assess your intent to return to your country of residence upon completion of your course of study. They majority of consul will refuse the visa because they cannot assess your ties to Argentina in Paris or Spain. They would tell you to go back to your country of residence to apply.

Further, by applying in Argentina you are showing ties to Argentina simply by virtue of traveling there to see your family and it is therefore assumed you have compelling ties to that Country..

This is the absolutely worst time of year to try to get favorable discretion from a consul. Why? Because it is the busiest and they are overworked seeing as many as 30 applicants a day. That does not make for pleasant working conditions and positive attitude.
- Can I get an F1 renewal in the US without going to Argentina and/or can I travel on my Spanish passport without jeopardizing my F1 duration of status?

No, you do not understand the "duration of status". That is only the period of stay you are authorized at your last entry. Once you depart you no longer have "D/S". It is not something you keep upon departure.

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