Return to the Regular F-1 Visa Regulations
Starting in March 2020, in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP, an agency of the Department of Homeland Security, or DHS) implemented some exceptions to the normal F-1 regulations.
The pandemic exceptions were related to:
- The full course of study (FCS) requirements of the F-1 regulations, including a relaxing of the number of online credits that a student could count toward FCS.
- The option for continuing students to study 100% online from outside the U.S. without SEVIS record termination.
- Optional Practical Training (OPT) employment outside the U.S.Return to Normal F-1 Visa Regulations
On May 12, 2023, SEVP announced that the F-1 visa Covid-19 exceptions would end immediately.
This means that normal (non-pandemic) F-1 regulations are now effective and that none of the pandemic exceptions are available to students with F-1 visas.
GEO’s Updated Guidance
GEO’s guidance on this page has been updated to reflect the normal (non-pandemic) F-1 visa regulations. In other words, the F-1 visa guidance at GEO’s website is current with U.S. government guidance.
Questions or Concerns
If you have any questions or concerns about the F-1 visa regulations, please send an email to GEO Immigration Services (firstname.lastname@example.org) and one of our advisors will respond to you shortly.