A student who has violated F-1 student status is considered to be “out of status” and may apply to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) to be reinstated to lawful F-1 status. USCIS may considerreinstating a student to F-1 status if the student can establish the following:
• That the violation of status resulted from circumstances beyond the student’s control.
• That the student has not been out of status for more than 5 months prior to filing for reinstatement.
• The student is currently enrolled or intends to enroll for a full-time course load.
• The student has not engaged in any unauthorized employment.
• The student does not have a history of repeated violations.
• The student can document sufficient financial resources to pursue a full-time course load.
• The student is not deportable from the U.S. on any other grounds.
The application for reinstatement is made directly to USCIS; however, a student should ask the International Student Affairs Coordinator to review the application for reinstatement before it is submitted to USCIS.
A student does have the option of traveling outside the U.S. to regain status instead of applying for reinstatement. This would involve the student having to pay the SEVIS fee again, being issued a new I-20 with a new SEVIS ID number, and re-entering the U.S. with the new I-20. If the student decides to travel to regain student status, the student would forfeit any time accrued toward practical training or other benefits requiring the student to be registered for one academic year in order to qualify.