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Rules and Regulations

SEVIS Regulations

SEVIS—Student and Exchange Visitor Information System

International Student Status

  • Status is fulfilling all the conditions of one’s non-immigrant Visa who are given permission to enter the U.S. for a specific period of time to engage in academic activities with certain rules to follow to maintain his/her status.
  • Duration of Status is the period that a student is pursuing a full course of study, plus any practical training authorized following completion of the course of study

Status is different than the expiration date on Visa.

This is where to find the estimated time of the end of program of study:

F-1: I-20 under Program of Study section
J-1: DS-2019 under section 3

Farmingdale State College is required by Federal law to inform SEVIS if you do not follow SEVIS rules and regulations.

Maintaining Status

It is YOUR responsibility to maintain your status.

Your F-1 or J-1 status may be revoked if you fail to maintain status.

You must check in with our office with your immigration documents within 15 days at the start of each semester. You need to provide us with a local address whether on or off-campus.

Please keep copies of your documents and the originals in a SAFE place. It is your responsibility to make sure your passport, Visa and I-20/DS-2019 are valid.

Within 2 weeks of the start of each semester, appear in person with the following immigration documents during office hours:

I-20/DS-2019/passport/Visa/I-94 (electronic)


Travel within the U.S does not require authorization from OIEP. However, you should always take your passport and I-20/DS-2019 with you.

Travel outside the U.S. requires a travel signature. If you are an F-1 student, you must submit your I-20 for a travel signature from OIEP at least one week in advance. If you  from the OIEP, which must be obtained at least two weeks in advance.  If you are on a J-1 visa, please submit your DS-2019 to OIEP at least two weeks prior as a travel signatures are provided by SUNY.

Warning: our office cannot guarantee approval and signature outside of this timeline.

Full Time Enrollment

F-1 and J-1 students are required by law to attend school full time. While 12 credits is the minimum that is considered full time, it is recommended that students register for at least 15 credits for each of the fall and spring semesters in order to finish their program of study in a timely manner. Changes in program must first obtain approval from OIEP.

F-1 Reportable Events

The following events must be reported to and approved by the OIEP at which point a new I-20 will be issued:

  • Change of program of study
  • Program extension
  • Withdrawal from school
  • Leave of absence
  • Transfer to another school
  • Application for OPT
  • Change of address
  • Change of employment while on OPT
  • Change in education level.

J-1 Reportable Events

The following events must be approved by the OIEP prior to action:

  • Travel outside the US
  • Leave of absence
  • Withdrawal from school
  • Change of program of study
  • Change of address.

Grace Periods (after program completion)

  • F-1 students have an additional 60 days to depart the U.S. or apply for post-OPT
  • J-1 students and scholars have 30 days to depart the U.S.


Accrual of Unlawful Presence

Students on F or J visas who fail to maintain their nonimmigrant status on or after August 9, 2018 will begin accruing unlawful presence on the earliest of:

  • The day after the F or J nonimmigrant no longer pursues the course of study or the authorized activity, or the day after he or she engages in an unauthorized activity;
  • The day after completing the course of study or program (including any authorized practical training plus any authorized grace period), unless he or she makes a timely application to extend or change status