After much anticipation, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) began implementation of its automated I-94 Arrival/Departure Record procedures on Wednesday, April 30, 2013. 

Included in the first round of air and sea ports to use the automated I-94 procedures are:

  • Charlotte Douglas International Airport in North Carolina
  • Orlando International Airport in Florida
  • McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas
  • Chicago O’Hare International Airport
  • Miami International Airport and
  • George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston.

The automated I-94 roll-out will continue at air and sea ports (land border crossings are not included)which support international arrivals through May 21, 2013, by which time the I-94 automation procedures should be in place at all affected ports of entry.  CPB has posted its implementation schedule at CBP’s Travel Advisory.

After implementation of the automated I-94 procedures, foreign nationals who would have previously held paper I-94 cards will instead be given instructions explaining how to access their electronic I-94 cards by visiting www.cbp.gov/I94, CBP’s website.  Those who want or need a paper printout of their I-94 cards may access their electronic I-94s using that website.

The paper I-94 may be needed when requesting certain benefits from the Immigration Service such as a change or extension of nonimmigrant status or an application for adjustment of status to U.S. permanent residence, etc., as well as to provide evidence of legal status to employers, schools/universities or government agencies such as motor vehicle departments. 

USCIS is in the process of updating certain of its benefits application/petition forms which currently require I-94 information.  This is being done to help ensure that I-94 automation doesn’t disrupt USCIS’s adjudication of benefit requests. 

USCIS has indicated that it will accept a printout of the electronic I-94 as evidence of lawful admission when submitted with a benefit request.  Alternatively, USCIS has stated that it will also accept a photocopy of the passport biographic information page, visa and admission stamp.