This past year there have been several immigration rule changes and executive orders issued by President Trump which will impact foreign students and visiting scholars in F or J status. While we are working with students and scholars to share this information directly, updates will also be available here.
- SEVIS Fees to Increase: On June 24, 2019 the SEVIS fee for F-1 visas will increase from $200 to $350 and the SEVIS fee for J-1 visas will increase from $180 to $220.
- New Social Media Question on Visa Applications (Forms DS-160 & DS-260)
- Unlawful Presence Policy
- In early May of 2019 a federal judge issued a nationwide order temporarily blocking the Trump administration from enforcing a 2018 USCIS memo that makes it esier for students to accrue unlawful presence. Stay tuned for updates.
- New Rules related to Changing your Immigration Status within the US
- Important Changes to the Request for Evidence Policy (applies to change of status, OPT, etc.)
- OPT Applications and CPT Changes
- Supplemental Questions for Visa Applicants, Form DS-5535
- New 90 Day Rule (Important if you are considering changing your status after entering the US)
Future Anticipated Changes:
- Maximum Period of Authorized Stay for F-1 and other Non-Immigrants: For 2019 the Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement is suggesting they may seek a "maximum period of authorized stay, and options for extensions, for each applicable visa category." Currently non-immigrants typically enter for the "duration of status" rather than a specific period. It's too early to know if this regulatory change might move forward, so we will be watching closely. If duration of status is replaced with a maximum period of authorized stay it could possibly make extensions more difficult, increase the ways in which a student or scholar could become unlawfully present and/or may impact some work benefits.