When entering the U.S. with a visa, you could receive an I-94, Arrival-Departure Record. This card gets stapled to your passport. It is small and usually white or green in color. You need it to extend your stay, apply for permanent residency, or transfer to another visa status.
However, this card is not made from sturdy or durable material. As such, many people throughout the year could end up losing or damaging their I-94 card. So what happens in that case?
Filing your request
The USCIS discusses the process of handling lost, damaged or stolen cards. The first thing to note is whether you entered before the CBP switched to electronic records. In this situation, you might need to take care of a physical card instead.
First, you have to file your request with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, or the USCIS. This government body tends to move at a somewhat slow pace, and it can often take up to six months or even longer for a request to get fully processed by the USCIS.
This can require a measure of planning ahead on your part, so you can ensure you remain in the country under a legal basis. You may also want to file a police report for a stolen card.
The fee for replacement
You must also prepare to pay the fee for replacing your I-94 card. This is a fairly steep $445 as of right now. The exception is if you applied to fix an error the government made.
To fast-track your approval process, make sure that you make this payment in a timely fashion and have all of the appropriate documents turned in fully completed, accurately done and on time.