Earlier this month, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced that beginning in May 2019, I-94 numbers will be alphanumeric. The I-94 is the Arrival and Departure Record issued, in either paper or electronic format, by CBP to all nonimmigrants entering the United States. Currently, I-94 numbers are 11 digits long and are comprised of only numbers. The new I-94 format will have 9 digits, followed by a letter in the 10th position, and a digit in the 11th position, totaling 11 characters in all.
CBP has introduced the new format as a long-term solution for the creation of new numbers, in response to the depletion of numeric-only I-94 numbers. Our hope is to notify current and prospective clients of this upcoming format change so as to avoid confusion or alarm when the I-94s look slightly different than they have in years past.
Importantly, this change will not affect unexpired I-94s. Previously issued I-94s using the solely numeric format will continue to be valid until the Admit Until Date. Accessing the Admit Until Date varies depending on how one last entered the U.S. If the traveler entered at a land border port of entry, the Admit Until Date is printed on the paper I-94 that was provided upon arrival. All other travelers can access their most recent I-94 on CBP’s public I-94 website.
This is a straightforward clerical change that will not affect I-94s that were generated prior to May 2019. Please contact us with any questions regarding nonimmigrant authorized stay, the I-94 Form, and traveling to the U.S.