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M1 Visa for Nigerians

Nigerians who want to enrol in vocational studies in the U.S can apply for an M-1 visa. Any student who meets the requirements can be granted the M-1 visa.

For more information about the M-1 visa for Nigerians, how to apply or other immigration related questions, reach out to us. Call one of our immigration lawyers on +23413438882, on +44 (0) 3316300929 or contact us online.

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    Benefits of Choosing IAS USA Immigration Lawyers

    When it comes to obtaining a USA visa or permit, IAS USA immigration lawyers are well-equipped to help you.

    With IAS’s track record of successfully helping clients visit or immigrate to the United States, we can help businesses and individuals achieve their goals.

    Our dedicated immigration lawyers provide our services through a comprehensive and personalised approach. With IAS, you enjoy:

    Compassionate support from an experienced immigration lawyer dedicated to your success

    Support in gathering supporting documents and completing a high-quality application.

    Confidence that your case is being handled by an experienced team.

    In-house document checks done by lawyers who are well-versed in US immigration matters.

    Regardless of what your USA immigration query might be, IAS is here to help and support you. Call us or enquire online to learn more about how we can help you.

    Services we Provide

    Need to Enrol in Vocational Studies in the U.S.?

    We have a proven track record of assisting numerous Nigerians in obtaining their M-1visas. If you require guidance on how to get started, feel free to contact us for expert assistance. Allow us to handle the details and provide you with comprehensive support.

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    For Nigerian emigration matters, please call +23413438882 or +44 (0) 3316300929

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    M1 Student Visa Overview

    The M-1 visa is a nonimmigrant visa which permits foreign students to study vocational, technical or nonacademic programmes in the U.S.

    With the M-1 student visa, you’re not allowed to work during the course of your study. And you have to prove that you have enough funds readily available to pay all your living costs and tuition throughout your intended stay in the U.S.

    The M-1 visa is quite related to the F-1 visa in terms of eligibility and application process but it is designed for non U.S. citizens who want a full time enrolment at an academic institution or a language school.

    You can study on a part time basis in the United States with the M-1 visa but you’re not permitted to work or seek employment.

    Most of the time, students are usually granted the M-1 visa for a year. However, if you want to remain in the US for an additional three years, you can apply for an extension.

    M1 Student Visa Requirements for Nigerians

    To apply for the M-1 student visa, you need to meet the M-1 visa requirements which includes:

    • Prove your non-immigrant intent. You can accomplish this by showing that you have significant ties to your country of origin that will compel you to return when your visa expires.
    • Be admitted by an institution in the Student Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) published list.
    • Have good knowledge of the English language. You must be able to understand lectures and course material. A standardised English proficiency test, such as the TOEFL or IELTS, can be taken to show your level of proficiency.
    • Get your bank statements or other proof of your financial status to show that you have enough funds to cover all your expenses in the U.S.

    If you reach out to our immigration lawyers will allow them to determine whether you qualify for the M1 Visa. If they find that you don’t fit the requirements, they can suggest other US visas you can apply for, such as the J-1, EB-2 visa, or the F-1 student visa.

    Applying for an M1 Visa

    To apply for the M-1 visa, you need to follow a step-by-step process. They include:

    Get your I-20 Form

    Once you are admitted into your chosen institution, they will issue you the Form I-20. This form is only issued by the United States Citizen and Immigration Service (USCIS) approved schools.

    As soon as you get this form, you can now start the application process. Remember that just because you were accepted by a US school doesn’t guarantee that your visa will be approved. You have to complete the application process and wait for USCIS to make a decision.

    Submit DS-160 Form Online

    Immediately after receiving an approval form the U.S institution, the first form you need to submit online is the DS-160 form. You will need to provide information relevant to your background, the purpose of your travel to the U.S, and programme of study in the form.

    When you submit your form at the end, you will get a confirmation code and page. You must ensure you print the confirmation page because you will have to bring it for your visa interview and documentation.

    Pay the Visa Application Fee

    You have to pay $160 for your visa application fee. Considering the country you’re applying from, you may be required to pay an additional visa issuance fee.

    Besides that, you will be required to pay $200 for the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVIS) I-901 fee. The reason for the payment is because all international students coming to study in the United States on an M-1 visa are registered in SEVIS.

    Ensure you keep the receipts for all payments you’ve made because you’ll need them later.

    Schedule Your Interview

    After making payments you’ll need to schedule an interview for your visa appointment. Ensure you do this as early as you can, because it might take a while to get you an appointment because of the U.S embassies’ high workload. After you have scheduled the interview, you’ll be given an interview appointment letter which you have to attach to your documents file.

    Compile Your Document File

    All required forms should be included in your document file and when you attend your visa appointment, you should come along with it.

    Attend Your Interview

    Finally, you have to be physically present at your visa interview and you will be asked questions which you need to answer to prove you’re eligible for the M-1 visa. Some of the questions could be about your ties to Nigeria, your financial support and intentions for traveling to the U.S.

    If you have dependents coming along with you, such as your spouse or children, you will also be required to prove your relationship to them.

    Study in the US from Nigeria. Contact us and apply for M1 Student Visa today.

    What Are the Required Documents for an M-1 visa?

    There are a number of supporting documents you need to submit in order to get the M-1 visa. They include:

    • A passport size photograph.
    • Proof of your educational qualifications.
    • A passport that should be valid for at least six months beyond the duration of your stay in the United States.
    • Proof of your English proficiency.
    • Proof of sufficient funds to cover your expenses during your stay in the U.S.
    • Evidence that you have significant ties to your country of origin that will compel you to return when your visa expires such as your lease for an apartment or job contract.

    Entering the United States

    As a non U.S. citizen, your M-1 visa can only allow you to travel to a U.S. airport (port of entry) and request to be allowed to enter the U.S. But it does not guarantee that you will be allowed to enter the United States.

    The officials of the Homeland Security (DHS), U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) have the authority to deny or allow you enter the United States at the port of entry.

    At the port of entry, a CBP official will make a decision after you have presented your visa, passport, and Form I-20. A CBP official will provide you an admission stamp or paper Form I-94 and Departure/Arrival Record immediately you are allowed to enter the U.S.

    Extending Your Stay

    You are only permitted to stay in the U.S. for the duration of your studies. However, you may want to request for an extension of your M-1 visa. You must speak to your Designated School Official (DSO) to help you request an extension of stay in the SEVIS.

    For the extension of your stay, you must note the following:

    • Your record as an M-1 visa holder is only eligible for an extension within a very specific period.
    • You may only ask for an extension in one year maximum increments each time.
    • You may only receive cumulative extensions for a maximum of 3 years from the start date of your original enrolment, plus 30 days.
    • This 3 year maximum period includes any extensions given because of a change in schools or a return to legal status.

    You must provide proof of funds to cover your expenses throughout your proposed extension. If your DSO confirms that you have a medical or educational justification for requesting an extension and also have enough funds to stay in the U.S., your DSO will input your request for your M-1 extension stay on the SEVIS student’s record.

    Your DSO will now sign a new Form I-20 for you once the request has been granted. With the updated Form I-20, you must now apply for an extension of stay with the USCIS.

    Can I Change My Status to Another US Visa?

    If you wish to change your immigration status, through the USCIS you may request that your non-immigrant status be changed to another category.

    Some of the reasons that could make you need a change of status could be an offer of employment, you got married to a U.S. citizen, etc.

    You do not need to apply for a new visa in order to receive a change of status from the USCIS while you’re in the United States. But, if you leave the U.S. you must apply for a new visa in the right category at a U.S. consulate or embassy for your travel.

    Ready to learn in the US? Contact us to start your M1 Student Visa process today.

    What Can’t I Do With an M1 Visa in the USA?

    When you get to the United States as an M-1 visa holder, there are certain things you’re not allowed to do. They include:

    • Registering in a degree bearing education
    • Registering in language courses
    • Registering in technical courses
    • Having a full time work off campus
    • Partaking in your vocational programme on part time basis
    • Transferring to another school  or programme just after 6 months of getting into the United States.

    If you wish to work with your M-1 visa, you need to apply for the M-1 Visa Work Permit or the Employment Authorisation Document (EAD). It should be noted that with these permissions you can only be able to work part-time on the campus when the school is open or full time when there are no classes. And all the work you will do must be related to your study in the school.

    M1 Visa Processing Time

    The processing time of an M-1 visa application is quick, just before your visa interview. Some applicants get a response immediately after the end of their visa interview.

    A minimum of 4 weeks is the average processing time of the M-1 visa. Therefore consider the start date of your vocational course when you start your application for the M-1 visa.

    If there are complications in your application, especially due to mistakes or missing important supporting documents, the processing of your visa application may take much longer.

    This is why we recommend you reach out to one of our friendly immigration advisers at IAS today for expert advice. Call us today on +23413438882 or our U.S. office on +44 (0) 3316300929 or contact us online.

    How Long Can I Stay in the US With an M1 Visa?

    In most situations the M-1 visa is valid for 1 year. Its validity also depends on how long your vocational study will last in the U.S. However, some applicants receive a shorter period for the visa.

    Your Form I-20 remains valid only for 1 year regardless of how long the M-1 visa is granted. This implies that despite the fact that your M-1 visa has a longer validity period, you need to get a new Form I-20 yearly.

    The maximum validity period of the Form I-20 and M-1 visa is 3 years. Therefore you will have to get an extension to finish your study if your M-1 visa can’t be valid until you finish it.

    Can I Bring My Dependents with Me on the M1 Visa?

    If you have a spouse or unmarried children who are below 21 years (dependents), they may be permitted to join you in the U.S. with an M-2 visa. The M-2 visa permits the dependents (holder) to stay with you (the M-1 visa holder) during the duration of your study.

    Although the M-2 dependents have their individual I-20 forms, they are required to return to Nigeria once the M-1 visa expires.

    The M-2 dependents are not permitted to study for degrees or work. However, their children can only finish their elementary and middle school (until 12th grade). While the spouse can only register in recreational courses.

    Turn your US study dreams into reality. Contact us to get your M1 Visa today.

    How Can IAS Help?

    To get an M-1 visa from Nigeria you need to meet all requirements and provide all supporting documents as required. Besides that, you need to make payments when required.

    You may also need your spouse and children (under 21) to join you in the United States and don’t know the exact path to achieve this. Our immigration lawyers are professionals in immigration laws and will offer you expert guidance and follow you throughout your visa application process in order for it to be done appropriately to meet the USCIS standard.

    We will also give you tips on how to answer your visa interview questions. Because of this, you’ll stand a chance to get a successful decision after your visa interview. You’ll also save yourself the anxiety and unnecessary expenses in the process.

    This is why we advise you to reach out to one of our friendly immigration lawyers at IAS today. Call us on +23413438882 or on +44 (0) 3316300929 or contact us online.

    We offer immigration advice sessions as face to face appointments at our Lagos office, all of our UK offices, or via the phone.

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    Frequently Asked Questions

    You do not need to provide the consular officials evidence of health insurance in order to get an M1 visa. However, due to the high cost of healthcare in the United States, it is highly advised that you obtain coverage before traveling.

    After completing your community vocational programme, the F-1 visa allows you the choice to move to a university. While you’re allowed to spend only one year in a vocational programme on an M-1 visa before you return to Nigeria. Also, students in M-1 are not permitted to advance to the university level.

    Students who want to pursue vocational studies in the US must apply for the M1 visa. The M-1 visa vocational courses include cooking classes, aviation school, technical courses, cosmetology, and mechanical classes.

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