F-1 Student Visa

Requirements, Benefits, Limitations and Forms

The F-1 visa is a non-immigrant student visa that allows foreign nationals the opportunity to pursue a full-time education in the United States. The F-1 student visa is for full-time students wanting to attend college, university or an academic

high school in the U.S.

Benefits of the F-1 Visa

  • It is possible for the F-1 visa holder to work on campus part-time while attending school.
  • Dependents such as a spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21 are allowed to come to the U.S. on the F-2 visa.
  • F-1 visa holders are allowed to stay in the U.S. for the duration of their studies.


  • The F-1 visa is only given through a qualified academic institution.
  • Student applicants must be registered with SEVIS through the intended educational institution.
  • Students who have been away from their studies for more than 5 months are required to obtain a new visa.


  • Before applying for the student visa, applicants must be accepted for enrollment in an established school which is SEVIS approved.
  • F-1 applicants must have a SEVIS generated I-20 issued from the DHS qualified educational institution they plan on attending. The approved I-20 should be submitted when applying for the student visa.
  • Applicants must have a residence abroad in their country of origin.
  • F-1 visa applicants must intend on returning to their home country upon expiration of the visa.
  • Student visa applicants must provide proof of financial support during their stay in the U.S.

Documentation Required

  • Form I-20A-B, Certificate of Eligibility for Non-immigrant (F-1) Student Status for Academic and Language Students or Form I-20M-N, Certificate of Eligibility for Non-immigrant (M1) Student Status for Vocational Students. Both forms must be a SEVIS generated form completed by the school.
  • Form DS-156, Non-Immigrant Visa Application to be filed by the student
  • Form DS-158, Contact Information and Work History for Non-immigrant Visa Application
  • Current passport valid for 6 months past the expiration of the student visa
  • School coursework, scores from standardized tests such as entrance exams and transcripts or diplomas from previous schools.

Given the high stakes of the outcome of your F-1 student visa application, it is important to understand your rights and your obligations under the law. If you are ready to begin the application process or have questions, then contact us today to schedule a call or a meeting. We are more than happy to call you wherever you are in the world at no cost to you.

Eliana Phelps

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *