Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is phasing out the issuance of paper I-94 cards to foreign nationals arriving in the U.S. by air or sea. (Foreign nationals arriving at land points of entry/border crossings will still continue to receive the paper I-94 card.)
The I-94 card grants nonimmigrant status and shows important information such as entry date, authorized period of stay and status (E-2, H-1B, L-1, etc.).
Instead of issuing a paper I-94 card, CBP will create an electronic record of the foreign national’s arrival and admission into the U.S. CBP will also issue an admission stamp in the passports of foreign nationals arriving in the U.S., which will confirm the person’s status, entry date, and their status expiration date. The electronic record of arrival can be viewed on a new, dedicated website located at www.cbp.gov/I94. In order to access an individual’s record of arrival, seven data points will be needed including name, passport number, date of admission, and port of entry. The web portal allows nonimmigrant aliens to print a copy of their arrival record. According to CBP, the arrival record should be accessible within approximately 24 hours of admission into the U.S.
Foreign nationals who need proof of their status and expiration date to apply for a driver’s license, Social Security number, or to provide proof of employment authorization for Form I-9 employment eligibility verification purposes will need to go to this website to print a copy of their arrival record. We also recommend that foreign nationals keep a copy of their arrival record with their other immigration documents, just as they would an I-94 card.
Even during this phase-out of the paper I-94 cards, paper I-94 cards should still be available and foreign nationals may request a paper Form I-94 to document their status and expiration date.
Unfortunately, we believe this transition from paper I-94 cards to electronic arrival records may cause some confusion and inconvenience to foreign nationals. Especially as they apply for other government benefits, like a Social Security number or a driver’s license and other government agencies adapt their processes to CBP’s new electronic system.