Understanding Immigration Regulations

UWGBIt is your responsibility to know, understand, and follow the rules of your visa status. The Office of International Education staff is professionally trained to assist you with immigration matters. If you have questions regarding your status, make an appointment with an advisor in the Office of International Education.

 

DO NOT follow the advice of friends, family, or other international students who are not authorized to work with the U.S. Government to file immigration applications. The majority of immigration “problems” are a direct result of students following inaccurate advice from unqualified people.

While not an exhaustive list, the items listed below are commonly misunderstood and/or neglected responsibilities concerning your F-1 or J-1 Visa Status. It is your responsibility to comply with the regulations.

  • F-1 and J-1 visa holders must be enrolled full-time. This means that you are required to complete a minimum of 12 credits (9 credits for graduate study) each semester while at UW-Green Bay. Written permission to fall below full-time must be granted by your Designated School Official (advisor in the Office of International Education) before making a change to your course registration.
  • You have proven to the U.S. Government as well as to UW-Green Bay that you have the financial resources necessary to support your tuition and living expenses while in the United States. Do not “expect” to receive any financial assistance or to work on campus.
  • You are not allowed to work off campus unless you obtain special permission from the U.S. Government as a result of serious, urgent, and unforeseen circumstances. F-1 students may obtain special permission in the form of an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) or a written notation on your I-20 from the Office of International Education specifically allowing Curricular Practical Training (CPT) or Optional Practical Training (OPT). A Social Security Card/Number does not grant you permission to work in the United States.
  • If planning to travel abroad, you must obtain permission from your DSO (Office of International Education) prior to leaving the United States. Note: You will not be allowed to reenter the U.S. without a properly verified immigration record.
  • Any changes to your address must be updated with the U.S. government within 10 days of a move. Notify the Office of International Education in the event of an address change.
  • You must maintain a valid passport
  • You must maintain adequate health insurance for the duration of your stay in the United States (insurance policies are deemed “adequate” or “inadequate” by the Office of International Education)
  • You are required to file non-resident tax forms by April 15th of each year
  • If you are unable to complete your program of study in the anticipated time allotment, you must meet with your DSO (Office of International Education) within the 30-day period preceding the program completion date indicated on your I-20 or DS-2019 to file an extension.
  • Within 30 days (J-1) or 60 days (F-1) of completing your program of study, you must either leave the United States, apply to change your nonimmigrant status, apply for Optional Practical Training (F-1 only), or gain admission to a new academic program and enroll in the next available term.