International Student Service Center

REINSTATEMENT TO F-1 STATUS

What is reinstatement?

When you are admitted to the United States in F-1 status, you are expected to comply with certain immigration regulations. If you fail to comply with these regulations, you will be considered “out of status” and will need to apply to the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) for “reinstatement.” `Only by seeking reinstatement can you regain certain benefits attached to F-1 status, such as the ability to work on-campus, to engage in practical training, or to receive certification for re-entry into the U.S. after travel abroad.

When is reinstatement necessary?

The following are considered violations of F-1 status that may necessitate reinstatement:

Failure to attend the school whose SEVIS I-20 you used to enter the United States

Failure to maintain full-time registration as required

Failure to apply for a Program Extension within the 30-day period before the completion date on your SEVIS I-20 , if you need more time to complete your current program

Failure to obtain a new SEVIS I-20 if you change your educational program or degree level and notify the INS within 15 days of beginning the new program or level.

Failure to obtain a new SEVIS I-20 and notify INS within 15 days of registering at Baruch College if you transfer to Baruch from another school or institution.

Who is eligible to be reinstated?

Reinstatement is possible if you:

Are pursuing a full-time course of study

Can document sufficient financial resources to pursue a full-time course of study

Can establish that the violation of F-1 status resulted from circumstances beyond your control or that failure to be reinstated would result in extreme hardship

Are not deportable from the United States on any grounds

Have not been out of status for more than 5 months at a time of filling the reinstatement

Note that certain kinds of violations cannot be remedied through reinstatement; instead they require that you depart the United States. Among these violations is working in the U.S. without appropriate, and prior, authorization from the International Student Service Center (ISSC) or the INS.   Unauthorized employment is considered a deportable offense that cannot be resolved through reinstatement.

Procedure:

In order to apply for reinstatement, you must first qualify for an SEVIS I-20 issued specifically for this purpose.   You should speak with the ISSC to determine whether or not you are eligible for reinstatement.   If so, the ISSC will issue a new SEVIS I-20 for reinstatement to allow you to submit an application to the INS.   Make sure that any accompanying dependents are included on the SEVIS I-20, since any status violation committed by you also affects any dependent family members.

Please note that the reinstatement application is made directly by you to the INS. The ISSC does not have a role in endorsing or approving your application; only the INS can reinstate you to F-1 status.   However, if you would like ISSC to examine your application, we will be happy to do so.

Your reinstatement application should include the following:

  • Your written requests to the INS for reinstatement, explaining the circumstances for being “out of status.”
  • Letter from academic Advisement indicating when you will complete your degree requirements
  • Official copy of your current transcript
  • An SEVIS I-20 for reinstatement, with financial documentation covering the tuition, fees, and living expenses for your program of study. Sign and date this SEVIS I-20.
  • A completed INS form I-539.
  • A bank check or money order made payable to the Immigration and Naturalization Service in the amount of $300.00.
  • Photocopy of your passport identification page. Do not send your passport!
  • Photocopies of all previous SEVIS I-20(s).
  • An original I-94 card showing that you were admitted in F-1 status for “duration of status.

You are advised to photocopy all your application material for your own records before sending it to the INS .

Send the application by certified mail, return receipt requested to :

Dept. of Homeland Security
USCIS Vermont Service Center
75 Lower Welden Street
St. Albans, VT 05479-0001

If the reinstatement is approved, the INS adjudicator will endorse your SEVIS I-20 to indicate that you have been reinstated and return it to you. If your application is denied, you will be notified and required to leave the U.S. Please bring your response from the INS to the ISSC so that we may advise you and update your file.

Special Considerations

Processing times for reinstatement applications may vary; it may take as long as 6-8 months. Although you may continue to study, you are not eligible for any privileges associated with F-1 status, such as employment on-campus or practical training, while your application is pending.

Alternative to Reinstatement

An alternative to reinstatement requires that you depart the United States and return on a new SEVIS I-20 marked for “initial attendance.” However, if you choose this alternative, you forfeit any time accrued toward practical training eligibility. You must again wait nine (9) months from the date you re-enter on the new SEVIS I-20 in order to re-establish your eligibility for practical training.  

Speak to the ISSC for more information.

 

Traveling after reinstatement proceeded:

Once the student receives the approval from USCIS for the reinstatement, he/she must apply for a new F-1 student visa when traveling outside of US. Be advised that at this time the US Embassy will request a copy of your receipt of payment of for the $200.00 SEVIS Fee.