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SEVIS Terminations and Status Violations

When a status violation occurs, ISSS may be required to terminate a student’s SEVIS record. Termination of a SEVIS record (i.e. an I-20) is serious and can have negative consequences for a student and his/her ability to stay in the U.S. Grounds for termination of a SEVIS record include but are not limited to:

  • Unauthorized employment
  • Unauthorized withdrawal from classes
  • Unauthorized drop below full course of study
  • Expulsion and suspension
  • Failure to enroll in classes

In most cases, the termination of a student’s SEVIS record results in the student’s immediate departure from the US. The departure is necessary to avoid more severe consequences. Additionally, in cases of terminations, a student forfeits the 60 day grace period. If your SEVIS record is terminated, there are only two ways to regain your status:

1) By travel. Exit then re-enter the U.S. with a new I-20. This option is often the quickest and carries the least risk.

2) By reinstatement. Submit a reinstatement application to the US government. An F-1 student is only eligible for reinstatement if all of the following conditions apply to the student:

  • Has not been out of status for more than 5 months at the time of filing the request for reinstatement.
  • Does not have a record of repeated or willful violations regulations
  • Is currently pursuing, or intending to pursue, a full course of study in the immediate future at the school which issued the Form I-20
  • Has not engaged in unauthorized employment
  • Is not deportable on any other grounds
  • Establishes to the satisfaction of USCIS, in detail showing, either that:
    • The violation resulted from circumstances beyond the student’s control OR
    • The violation relates to a reduction in the student’s course load that would have been within a DSO’s power to authorize, and that failure to approve reinstatement would result in extreme hardship to the student

ISSS will assist students with a reinstatement petition only if 1) all of the conditions above apply and 2) the violation was not preventable. Students who do not meet the above eligibility requirements will need to consult with a U.S. immigration attorney. An advisor from ISSS will work with you to determine what the best option for you would be.

To avoid termination of your SEVIS record, be aware of the following:

  • Register for a full course of study each term
  • Work only with permission
  • Do not break university or U.S. laws
  • Check your University of Dayton e-mail for important reminders

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I reestablish F-1 student status by obtaining a new initial Form I-20 and reentering the United States?

Yes. However, you will be considered an initial student for SEVIS purposes. You will have to pay the SEVIS I-901 fee and any time that you have accrued towards qualification for training or employment is lost. You must have the new SEVIS Form I-20 showing that you are entering on a new SEVIS ID number.

Be aware that the CBP inspecting officer will determine whether or not to admit you to the United States with the new SEVIS Form I-20. If you did not comply with the terms of your status during a prior stay in the United States, CBP may decide that you are not eligible to reenter.

Can I study while my reinstatement application is pending?

Processing times for reinstatement applications vary; it may take as long as four months for the application to be adjudicated. Although you may continue to study while the application is pending (in fact, you are required to register full-time during this period.), you will not be eligible for any type of employment until the reinstatement is approved. If the application is denied, you will begin to accrue days of unlawful presence in the U.S. Accrual of more than 180 days of unlawful presence could subject a person to a 3-year or 10-year bar from reentering the U.S.