The visa renewal process is the same procedure that you followed the first time you applied for the visa. Each time you apply for a visa, you must prove to the consular officer you have enough funds to continue studying, you have been a full time student, and that you plan to return to your home country after completion of your degree. Make sure you take the following documents with you to the US Embassy:
- Valid (unexpired) passport (valid for at least 6 months after your reentry date)
- SEVIS I-20 or DS-2019 with a valid travel signature and bearing your current major and academic program
- Official CSUF transcripts
- Financial documents indicating the source and amount of money you will be receiving during your attendance at CSUF
- A letter from the International programs Office showing your current full-time enrollment or that you are on approved optional practical training
Reinstatement of F-1 Status
F-1 student are admitted to the U.S. for a period known as "duration of status" (indicated as "D/S" on the I-94 Admission/Departure card). Failure to maintain the terms and conditions of F-1 status results in student being considered out of status. It may also be grounds for deportation from the U.S. under the Immigration Nationality Act: INA 237(a)(1)(C)(i).
Some examples of situations that will result in an F-1 student falling "out of status":
- Dropping out of classes without prior approval from the International programs Office
- Enrolling in less than full course load without approval from the International programs Office
- Working off-campus without permission
If you are considered out of status, you are strongly advised to see an International programs Advisor who will discuss options for "getting back to F-1 status". This process is called as "reinstatement of F-1 status" and the procedures may be complex depending on individual situations.
In order to be reinstated to F-1 student status, please see an International programs Advisor immediately. If you have been out of status for more than 5 months, you may need to seek assistance from an immigration attorney.
Revised — September 2013