Skip to main content | Skip to main navigation

       
  leftbg

News:

FSIS website under construction
Starting September 20, 2013, we'll be making changes to the format of our website. We ask for your patience as this may be a lengthy process. Contact Signe at signen@hawaii.edu if you have problems with website functionality or navigation.

New I-94 procedure
From April 30, 2013, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) will begin implementing a paperless I-94 procedure at U.S. air and sea ports of entry.

EB immigrant visa availability
U.S. Department of State's monthly Visa Bulletin


O-3 Dependents



O-3 eligibility

Obtaining O-3 status

O-3 extensions

Employment prohibited for O-3 dependents

Study permitted for O-3 dependents



O-3 eligibility [top]

Unmarried children under 21 years of age and spouses of O-1 employees are eligible for O-3 dependent status. Once an unmarried O-3 child turns 21, he/she can no longer remain in O-3 status. In order to remain in the U.S., he/she must change to another nonimmigrant visa status (e.g. F-1 student, B-2 visitor).



Obtaining O-3 status [top]

Dependents have 2 options for initially obtaining O-3 status:

OPTION 1: Applying for O-3 entry to the U.S.

O-3 dependents do not need to file any prior applications before applying for O-3 entry visas or applying for entry at a U.S. port of entry. To enter the U.S. in O-3 status, they should complete the following:

FIRST, family members must apply for O-3 entry visas at a U.S. embassy or consulate. (Canadian passport-holders can skip this step and go to the second step, below.) They should generally apply at the U.S. embassy/consulate having jurisdiction over their place of residence. Although they may apply at any U.S. embassy/consulate, it may be more difficult to qualify for the visa outside their country of citizenship or permanent residence. If they ever previously overstayed their authorized period of stay in the U.S., they must apply for any new visas at a consular office in their country of nationality.

  • Check the U.S. embassies and consulates website for visa application requirements and to make an appointment for a visa interview.
  • O-3 family members will need to show evidence of their relationship to the O-1 principal; the spouse should bring the marriage certificate and each O-3 child’s birth certificate to the visa interview. O-3 visa application requirements differ by embassy/consulate, so dependents must inquire with the specific U.S. embassy/consulate on the requirements for their visa application.

SECOND, dependents must apply for admission at a U.S. port of entry. O-3 dependents are eligible to enter the U.S. with or after the O-1 principal up to 10 days prior to the O-1 approval notice start date. O-3 dependents may not enter the U.S. before the O-1 principal. Each O-3 dependent should bring the following items to the port of entry:

  • Copy of O-1 approval notice
  • Valid O-3 entry visa in passport (N/A for Canadian passport-holders)
  • Passport valid for at least 6 months beyond the O-1 approval notice end date
  • Employment confirmation letter from the UH department for the O-1’s UH employment
  • Copy of marriage certificate for O-3 spouse
  • Copy of birth certificate for each O-3 child

Visas and/or approval notices will not guarantee entry to the U.S. The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer at the port of entry will review dependents' immigration documents and ask them questions about their stay. These officers have the discretion to admit them in O-3 status and may refer them to a more detailed secondary inspection.

When family members are admitted into the U.S. as O-3 dependents, their documents will be returned to them and they should each receive an admission date stamp with the notations “O-3” and a date indicating the length of their period of authorized stay in their passports. They should also receive instructions on how to print their own I-94 arrival records on CBP's I-94 website. The admission stamp with notations and the I-94 printout function as proof of their admission to and legal immigration status in the U.S. In some cases, they may be issued a paper I-94 at entry, but CBP is phasing out this process. If any dependents are issued a paper I-94, that card is evidence of his/her legal status in the U.S.

O-3 dependents should keep copies of their approval notices, passport biodata/expiration pages, visas, admission stamps, and I-94 records permanently in case any of the documents are lost or stolen.


After the dependents arrive in the U.S., please send copies of the following documents to FSIS so we can update our records and check that they were properly admitted to the U.S.:

  • Copies of each O-3 dependent’s passport biodata/expiration page
  • Copies of each dependent’s I-94 card or I-94 printout from CBP's I-94 website
  • Copies of each dependent's admission stamp with notations in passport
  • Copies of each dependent’s O-3 entry visa in passport (if applicable)

OPTION 2: Applying for a change of status to O-3 while in the U.S.

If UH is filing a petition for a change of status to O-1 on an individual's behalf, there may be dependents who will require a change to O-3 status.
If the dependents are currently in the U.S. in another dependent status (e.g. F-2, J-2), they must apply for changes of status to O-3 along with the employee's change of status to O-1.

Dependents may apply for changes of status to O-3 by filing Form I-539 (see the I-539 instructions). If the O-1's spouse is applying for O-3 status, he/she should complete the I-539 and sign the form in Part 5. If only minor children are applying for O-3 status, the eldest child’s information should be entered in the form; the child may sign in Part 5 if he/she is 14 years or older. If the child is under 14, the O-1 employee should sign the I-539 and provide his/her information in Part 5.

If dependents will file the I-539 WITH the O-1 change of status petition, attach the following documents to the I-539. The entire I-539 packet should be submitted by the department to FSIS with the O-1 request.

  • Form I-539 filing fee
  • 1 copy of each dependent's entry visa in passport (if applicable)
  • 3 copies of each dependent's current I-94 card or I-94 printout from CBP's I-94 website
  • 3 copies of each dependent's admission stamp with notations in passport
  • 3 copies of each dependent's Forms DS-2019, I-20, or I-797 (as applicable)
  • 3 copies of each dependent's passport biodata/expiration page(s)
  • 3 copies of marriage certificate for O-3 spouse
  • 3 copies of birth certificate for each O-3 child
  • 3 copies of any other required documents listed on the I-539 instructions

If dependents will file the I-539 SEPARATELY from the O-1 petition, they should attach the following documents to the I-539 and mail the entire packet to USCIS:

  • Form I-539 filing fee
  • 1 copy of each dependent's entry visa in passport (if applicable)
  • 1 copy of each dependent's current I-94 card or I-94 printout from CBP's I-94 website
  • 1 copy of each dependent's admission stamp with notations in passport
  • 1 copy of each dependent's Forms DS-2019, I-20, or I-797 (as applicable)
  • 1 copy of each dependent's passport biodata/expiration page(s)
  • 1 copy of marriage certificate for O-3 spouse
  • 1 copy of birth certificate for each O-3 child
  • Any other required documents listed on the I-539 instructions

If dependents are in another country and will enter the U.S. in O-3 status, they do not need to file Form I-539. Instead, they should follow the O-3 entry procedures above (see “OPTION 1: Applying for O-3 entry to the U.S.,").



O-3 extensions [top]

Dependents have 2 options for extending their O-3 status:

OPTION 1: Applying for O-3 reentry to the U.S.

If dependents are outside the U.S. when their O-3 status expires, they can reenter the U.S. with the necessary documents to obtain a longer O-3 period. Dependents should depart the U.S. before the O-3 end date and reenter the U.S. with the following documents:

  • Copy of O-1 extension approval notice
  • Valid O-3 entry visa in passport (N/A for Canadian passport-holders) (see the U.S. embassies and consulates website for visa application requirements and to make an appointment for a visa interview)
  • Passport valid for at least 6 months beyond the O-1 approval notice end date (if a passport will expire before the O-1 approval notice end date, that person will be granted a shorter period of stay than is printed on the approval notice, so it is best to renew the passport before reentry)
  • Copy of marriage certificate for O-3 spouse
  • Copy of birth certificate for each O-3 child
  • Employment confirmation letter from UH department

After O-3 dependents reenter the U.S., please send copies of the following documents to FSIS so we can update our records and check that they were properly admitted to the U.S.:

  • Copies of each dependent’s passport biodata/expiration page (if passport is new/renewed)
  • Copies of each dependent’s I-94 card or I-94 printout from CBP's I-94 website
  • Copies of each dependent's admission stamp with notations in passport
  • Copies of each dependent’s entry visa in passport (if applicable)


OPTION 2: Applying for an O-3 extension while in the U.S.

Family members can remain in the U.S. and file Form I-539 to extend their O-3 status concurrently with or separately from the O-1 extension petition. Dependents should request the same extension period that will be entered on the O-1 petition. It is important for the O-1 principal and/or O-3 family members to review the I-539 instructions before completing the form.

If dependents will file the I-539 WITH the O-1 extension petition, attach the following documents to the I-539. The entire I-539 packet should be submitted by the department to FSIS with the O-1 request.

  • Form I-539 filing fee
  • 1 copy of each dependent's entry visa in his/her passport (if applicable)
  • 3 copies of each dependent's current I-94 card or I-94 printout from CBP's I-94 website
  • 3 copies of each dependent's admission stamp with notations in passport
  • 3 copies of each dependent's Forms I-797 (if applicable)
  • 3 copies of each dependent's passport biodata/expiration page(s)
  • 3 copies of marriage certificate for O-3 spouse
  • 3 copies of birth certificate for each O-3 child
  • 3 copies of any other required documents listed on the I-539 instructions

If dependents will file the I-539 SEPARATELY from the O-1 extension petition, they should attach the following items to the I-539 and mail the entire packet to USCIS:

  • Form I-539 filing fee
  • 1 copy of each dependent's entry visa in passport
  • 1 copy of each dependent's current I-94 card or I-94 printout from CBP's I-94 website
  • 1 copy of each dependent's admission stamp with notations in passport
  • 1 copy of each dependent's Forms I-797 (if applicable)
  • 1 copy of each dependent's passport biodata/expiration page(s)
  • 1 copy of marriage certificate for O-3 spouse
  • 1 copy of birth certificate for O-3 each child
  • Any other required documents listed on the I-539 instructions

USCIS must receive the properly filed O-3 extension application and filing fee no later than the business day on or before the O-3 status end date. If USCIS receives the O-3 extension application late, dependents will no longer be in valid status and will begin accruing unlawful presence.

If family members are in another country and will enter the U.S. in O-3 status, they do not need to file Form I-539. Instead, they should follow the O-3 reentry procedures above (see “OPTION 1: Applying for O-3 reentry to the U.S.,").



Employment prohibited for O-3 dependents [top]

O-3 dependents are not eligible for employment. An O-3 may change to another immigration status that permits employment if he/she qualifies for such status.



Study permitted for O-3 dependents [top]

O-3 dependents may study in the U.S. on either a full or part time basis. However, the duration of their study depends on the O-1’s period of stay. O-3 dependents are not required to take a full course of study like F-1 students; O-3s are also ineligible for F-1 benefits such as on-campus employment and practical training.


rightbg