Cary, NC asked in Immigration Law for North Carolina

Q: How can i extend my ESTA stay in USA due to covid isolation? I am UK visiting USA for almost 90days but now cant fly!

I have been in the USA as a tourist on the Visa Waiver program for almost 90 days. I was due to fly out today and return in a few days to continue my USA trip for another 2 months, but I have just learned that a friend I have had contact with has covid, and although I have not tested positive, i have symptoms. All airlines say I can not fly, and medical advice is to self isolate for at least 14 days. This would mean i would need to extend my stay. How do I avoid an unlawful overstay. What is my best course of action to extend my stay and avoid having my visa waiver revoked or not being able to return to the states in the future? I do not know who to contact or what to do. Thankyou for any help you can give!?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Agnes Jury
Agnes Jury
  • Immigration Law Lawyer
  • Traverse City, MI

A: Normally you could file to extend your stay but Visa Waiver Program (VWP) entrants are not eligible to extend their stay or change status. However, under current regulations, if an emergency (such as COVID-19) prevents the departure of a VWP entrant, USCIS in its discretion may grant a period of satisfactory departure for up to 30 days. Please see 8 CFR 217.3(a). For those VWP entrants already granted satisfactory departure and unable to depart within this 30-day period because of COVID-19 related issues, USCIS has the authority to temporarily provide an additional 30-day period of satisfactory departure. To request satisfactory departure from USCIS, a VWP entrant should call the USCIS Contact Center. See:

Best wishes!

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