Renewing TN Status at the Border vs. Through the Vermont Service Center.
1. Extending TN Status through the Vermont Service Center.
- The petition (Form I-129) is sent through the mail. The applicant does not need to travel to the border to submit the application.
- Extension of TD status for spouses and children can also be accomplished by applying through the VSC. Therefore, family members do not need to travel to the border.
- An extension of TN status through the VSC also has the advantage of avoiding a face-to-face meeting with immigration officials, which some individuals find stressful.
- If timely mailed, the TN Professional should receive notice of an approval of extension of TN status in advance of the initial expiration of TN status.
- While an extension application made at the border requires the TN applicant to leave the U.S., an advantage of extending through the VSC is that the TN Professional does not need to leave the U.S.
- The disadvantages of an extension of TN status through the VSC are lengthy processing times and the inability to personally lobby and argue the theory of your case.
- Another disadvantage of an extension of TN status through the VSC is the possible extra scrutiny and unnecessary requests for further evidence (RFE) some TN applicants have received for Management Consultant and Scientific Technician positions.
- An extension of TN status through the VSC also has a possible disadvantage because the I-129 can sometimes be far more intrusive than an immigration officer at a POE (for example, with respect to questions regarding labor certifications and I-140 petitions).
2. Extending TN Status at the Border.
- Relatively quick adjudication. Applications are reviewed the same day they are presented.
- A Form I-129 or Form I-539 is not required for an extension of TN status at the border.
- Ability to personally lobby and argue the theory of your case.
- A disadvantage of extending TN status through the border is that each application presented at the POE is considered a new application. Consequently, even though an individual has been approved for a TN in the past, there is no guarantee that the individual will simply receive a subsequent rubber stamp approval.