- Stamp placed in the passport by an official of the Department of State at the U.S. consular office
- Only necessary for entry into the U.S.
- Can expire while in the U.S.
- Determines purpose, permissible activities, responsibilities and rights of the holder
- Lawful status must be maintained for duration of stay in U.S.
- Restrictions on employment
- Examples: F-1, J-1, H-1B
- Allowed to live and work in the U.S. permanently
- Generally no restrictions on employment
- Examples: Permanent Resident, Green Card
|Permission to Stay versus Employment Authorization
- Not always the same length of time
- Someone can have permission to stay in the U.S., but not be eligible to work
- Some statuses have grace periods
- Proof that an individual holds citizenship in a country
- Must be valid to enter the U.S.
- Must remain valid while in the U.S.
- Generally may be renewed inside the U.S.
- For J-1 Exchange Visitors
- Can be students or scholars
- Issued by the J-1 program sponsor
- Reflects dates of the J-1’s program and where they can work
|I-797 Approval Notice
- For H-1B, O-1, TN-1 Workers
- Issued by USCIS when the H-1B petition is approved
- Shows the location and dates employee is allowed to work
- May include an I-94 at the bottom
- For F-1 Students
- Issued by the academic institution where the student will be completing a specific degree program in a specific field of study
- Reflects dates of the F-1’s program
- Document placed in passport by U.S. consular office permitting holder to request admission to the U.S. in a specific status
- Must be valid to enter U.S. in that status
- OK if expires while in the U.S.
- If expired, a new visa must be obtained prior to returning to the U.S. from international travel
- Arrival/departure record denoting admission in a specific status and period of permissible stay
- Should be “D/S” for F-1 and J-1s
- Date-specific for H-1Bs
- Issued electronically. Accessible at https://i94.cbp.dhs.gov
|Employment Authorization Card
- Issued by USCIS
- Indicates the dates the employee is allowed to work
- Employee is responsible for applying for a renewal/extension