An F1 visa is used by foreign nationals who are entering the U.S. to attend an established institution of learning or other recognized place of study in the United States.

How do I obtain an F-1 Visa?

Some of the steps a student must take to enter the U.S. as a foreign student include:

1) Acceptance to an institution of learning approved by U.S. Investigations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in compliance with the SEVIS program.   The institution issues SEVIS Form I-20.  U.S. Investigations and Customs Enforcement-approved educational institutions are, among others,  language schools,    private elementary and secondary school to colleges and universities.  An F1 student can also attend a public secondary school for up to 12 months if he  or she reimburses the school for the full cost of attendance.  Thus, a student can remain in F1 visa status through their entire academic career starting in  elementary school until he or she graduates from a PhD. program provided they maintain a full course of study and other eligibility requirements.

2) Obtaining a visa or change to student status in the US before commencing studies.  Among other things, a student must prove to the consular officer or U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services: 1) that he or she intends to leave the US once they complete their course of study; 2) they meet the academic requirements; 3) that they have enough financial support to attend school without engaging in unauthorized employment;   4) they are proficient in English unless they have a valid reason not to be.

Can I work with an F1 Visa?

CIS regulations determine whether you are able to work on-campus, off-campus, or pursuant to practical training.  If you would like to know if you can work, the best place to start is by asking your institution’s Designated Student Officer.

Can F1 visa spouses and children live and work?

Admissible accompanying or following to join F1 spouses and dependent children under 21 can live but not work in the US   during the same time period as the principal foreign national in F-2 status.    Children in F-2 status can attend public elementary and secondary school.  F categories are allowed to bring domestic help if they meet regulatory requirements.

How can we help you?

Studying and living abroad is an exciting  and challenging adventure both personally and both personally and academically.   We can help you complete the documentation necessary to obtain a student visa after you have been issued an I-20.   Sometimes mistakes occur because the student was not aware or forgets that he or she cannot do the same things as their American classmates before informing or  obtaining permission from their Designated Student Officer first.    If advisable, we can assist you with reinstatements. We also provide information about work visas available after completion of program of study and completion of period of practical training, if any.

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