Immigration Regulations & Procedures For Students in the United States
have been a number of changes in U.S. immigration regulations. This is to inform
you of these changes and remind you of major immigration regulations currently
in effect. Please choose your topic from list below.
Regulations & Procedures|
- Special registration
is now conducted at ports-of-entry (airports). You are no longer required to report
to local immigration offices annually, unless specifically advised to do so by
- You are no longer required to file
form AR11 (address change form). Instead, you must report your change of
address to your International Program Office within 5 days of that change.
The International Officer will then update your address in SEVIS.
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the United States|
special registration process at the port-of-entry remains the same. You will be
fingerprinted, photographed, and interviewed under oath. Your documentation must
be valid and current (passport and I-20 form). The Immigration Officer will stamp
both copies of your I-20 and return page 3 to you.
continuing student whose visa has expired must apply for a new visa at the U.S.
Embassy in Kuwait after exiting the U.S.
- If you are
transferring schools and you are entering with an I-20 for the new school, be
sure that you have completed the transfer procedures for the new school and that
your transfer to the new school has been recorded in SEVIS.
the United States|
subject to special registration must depart the U.S. via Special Ports of Departure
(POD). If you fail to do so, you may be banned from entering the
You must report to an Immigration Officer at the
airport to register your departure from the U.S.
early since it is sometimes difficult to locate immigration authorities.
The Student and Exchange
Visitor Information System (SEVIS), the new electronic database is now fully operational.
This system allows universities to maintain correct information on students including
academic and enrollment status and addresses. The data is available to all U.S.
immigration officers and U.S. embassies throughout the world.
are required to report to the BCIS (formerly, INS) the following information on
- Failure of the student to maintain
status or complete the degree program.
- Change of the student’s
or dependent’s U.S. address or legal name.
- Students who have
graduated early or prior to the program end date.
action taken by the school against the student as a result of conviction of a
- Students who either fail to register or drop below
full course of study each term.
- The start date of the students’
- Any other information requested by SEVIS to
the Designated School Office (DSO – usually an assigned person in the International
School Office) with regards to a student’s current status.
are required to pay a SEVIS fee of $100.00.
Compliance with U.S. Immigration|
- You are not
allowed to arrive in the U.S. earlier than 30 days prior to the program start
date as indicated on the I-20.
- You are required to attend,
for at least one term, the school listed on the I-20 used to enter the U.S.
with the International Student Office of your school when you arrive on campus
for the first time. It is a good idea to check with the International Student
Adviser at least once per term to make sure you are in compliance with BCIS rules.
students are required to report to the International Student Office any change
in U.S. and/or home country address within 5 days of that change.
must maintain fulltime enrollment. This is defined as follows:
credits per term for undergraduate students.
- 9 credits per
term for Master’s students without university assistantships.
credits per term for Master’s students with university assistantships.
9 credits per term for Doctoral students without university assistantships.
3 credits per term for Doctoral students with university assistantships.
may be less than full-time ONLY ONE SEMESTER per degree program due to academic
difficulty or improper course placement. In this event, you must be enrolled for
at least one class and you must have the permission of the DSO for the under-enrollment.
must have a valid passport at all times while in the U.S.
must have a valid I-20 that reflects your correct name (as it appears in your
passport), birth date, level of educational program, and major.
must not overstay the program end date on the I-20. If you are not completing
within the date specified, you must seek an extension of stay through the International
Student Office of the university.
- You are permitted to work
on campus up to 20 hours per week and full-time during vacation periods. You cannot
exceed these hours without permission.
- Besides the rules
of the Cultural Division, BCIS permits you to count only one on-line course per
term as part of the full-time course requirement.
- F-2 dependents
are not allowed to enroll in degree programs. They must apply for a change of
status to F-1 and wait for the change of status to be granted before beginning
classes. F-2’s may participate in recreational courses that do not count towards
- When transferring schools, you must provide your
current school with proof of admission to the new school. Your current school
will enter a release date into SEVIS. This is usually the last day of the
current academic term at your home school. You are allowed to change your mind
up until the release date. Once the release date has passed, you will be
issued a new I-20 by the new school, completing the transfer process.
transferring schools, you may not exceed a period of 5 months between the final
day of enrollment at the last school and the start date of the new school.
you withdraw from, or are asked to leave the university, you must depart the U.S.
That Will Result in Your Being Out-Of-Status|
in the U.S. after withdrawing from school or being dismissed
or suspended. In these circumstances, you must depart the
- Failing to report to your university
by the date indicated on your I-20.
- Failing to report to the International
Student Office of your university within 10 days of your
I-20's reporting date if you are enrolling at the university
for the first time.
- Unexcused absences from classes,
particularly in Intensive English Programs.
- Dropping below full-time course
load without prior authorization.
- Having an expired passport.
- Working without a valid working
- Failure to report change of address
or name to the International Program Office of your university
within 5 days.
- Being convicted of a crime.
- Remaining in the U.S. longer than
60 days after completing your program.
- If you have a medical condition
interrupting your studies, you must present a medical excuse
to your International Student Office. Depending on your
medical condition, you may be allowed to reduce your course
load or if the condition is very serious to withdraw from
the school. You are allowed an aggregate of 12 months for
the entire program of study where a reduced course load
or absence from school is permitted. Students must gain
BCIS permission through their International Office for each
term they are ill and seeking medical withdrawal or reduced
that you have violated the terms of your “F” or “J” (student) visa. Your school
s required to report to the BCIS all students who are out of status.
You are reminded that the regulations outlined
above represent U.S. Law. As stated in the U.S. Federal Registry,
non-compliance with these regulations may result in prosecution
and/or deportation from the United States.
We urge you to visit our Immigration page: http://www.kuwaitculture.com/students/Immigration.htm
Immigration regulations are subject to change. We will attempt
to inform you of any changes through this website. You must also check for changes
at the immigration website at http://uscis.gov.
Note that this report covers BCIS regulations.
You are reminded that you are also subject to regulations of your particular Kuwait
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