Application Procedure for F-1 Reinstatement

To apply for F-1 Reinstatement, please prepare the information and paperwork listed below. Once you have the required paperwork, make an appointment with your ISSO advisor.

  • Personal Check or Money Order payable to “U.S. Department of Homeland Security” for the I-539 Fee
  • USCIS Form I-539 – Complete the form as best you can, but leave items blank if you are not sure what to write. You will be advised during your appointment
  • Personal Letter to USCIS – Please write a letter that explains the details of the circumstances that caused you to fall out of status. It is important you establish that either
    • Your violation resulted from circumstances beyond your control, or
    • Your violation relates to a reduced course load that would have been in the ISSO’s power to authorize and that failure to receive reinstatement would result in extreme hardship. Email a copy to the ISSO advisor who is meeting with you for reinstatement so it can be reviewed before your appointment
  • Financial Documents – Prepare new and current financial documents to show you have sufficient funds to cover the current expenses for tuition, fees and cost-of-living for one academic year (9 months)
  • Verification of Enrollment from BU Registrar – Obtain a transcript of all course work completed, and also certification of your full-time enrollment for the current semester (or for the next semester if currently between semesters)
  • Statement from Student Accounting Services that verifies you owe no money to BU up to and including the current semester. (If currently between semesters, it would be highly beneficial to show you have already paid your tuition and fees for the next semester, if possible)
  • Support Documentation Related to F-1 Infraction – May include:
    • Support letter from your academic department
    • Support letter from other parties that can attest to the specific details of your case
  • All Previous I-20s
  • Passport biographical page and I-94 record (do not bring copies)

During your appointment you may be advised to obtain additional documentation that will help your specific case before submitting your application to the USCIS. Once your application is completed, you will be given further instructions for filing it with the USCIS Vermont Service Center.

Results of Application

Approval – If your reinstatement application is approved, USCIS will update your SEVIS record. Your ISSO advisor will contact you and arrange an appointment to reissue a new I-20 reflecting the reinstatement approval and answer any questions you may have.

Not Required – If USCIS determines that your violation does not require reinstatement, they will send a notification to your ISSO advisor.

Denial – If you are denied reinstatement, you cannot appeal the decision and you must depart the U.S. as soon as possible. USCIS will send a written notice stating the basis for the denial to your ISSO advisor. Depending on the basis for the denial, it may still be possible for you to request a new I-20 to travel and reenter the U.S. in a new F-1 status.