Reinstatement (Immigration) Law and Legal Definition

Reinstatement is a process through which a request is made to the USCIS for restoring an individual’s immigration status after such individual’s action has resulted in a violation. For instance, an F-1 or J-1 student who has overstayed his/her authorized period of stay or otherwise violated his/her student status may be reinstated to lawful F-1/J-1 status by INS. An application for reinstatement is made on form I-539 along with supporting documents. Generally, there are two ways by which a student can seek reinstatement:

1. By applying directly to USCIS and remaining in the United States until a decision is made, or

2. By traveling outside the U.S. with a new I-20 and re-entering the country prior to the expiry of the entry visa.