The Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) maintains the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS), and oversees SEVP-certified schools and their F and M students and dependents in accordance with governing regulations, found in the following parts of the Code of Federal Regulations. Schools and F and M nonimmigrants are subject to these regulations.
Department of Homeland Security (DHS)
Department of State
Social SecuritySocial Security Administration (SSA) — Information on how and when you can obtain a Social Security Number.
Federal Income Tax InformationTax Information for Foreign Students and Scholars — Foreigners temporarily present in the United States as students, scholars, teachers, researchers, exchange visitors, and cultural exchange visitors are subject to special rules with respect to the taxation of their income. This web page contains extensive information on the rules and requirements for those individuals.
Department of EducationPostsecondary Educational Institutions and Programs Accredited by Accrediting Agencies and State Approval Agencies Recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education — The database lists approximately 6,900 postsecondary educational institutions and programs, each of which is accredited by an accrediting agency or state approval agency recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education as a "reliable authority as to the quality of postsecondary education" within the meaning of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA). The database does not include a number of postsecondary educational institutions and programs that elect not to seek accreditation but nevertheless may provide a quality postsecondary education. The U.S. Department of Education recommends that the database be used as one source of qualitative information and that additional sources of qualitative information be consulted.
Immigration Laws and Regulations
Do not submit any documentation unless your school has received a 180-day notice via the Student & Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS)
Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP)-certified schools must go through the recertification process every two years to ensure they remain eligible for certification and have complied with all record keeping, retention and reporting requirements, and all other requirements, in accordance with the regulations.
One hundred and eighty days before a school’s Certification Expiration Date (CED), designated school officials (DSOs) will receive notice from SEVP through the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) that the school is eligible to apply for recertification.
Once you have been notified via SEVIS that your school is within the 180 days of the Certification Expiration Date, your school must submit a completed recertification package prior to the Certification Expiration Date.
Please review the Recertification Checklist to assist you in completing the recertification process. Do not submit the checklist with your recertification package. This is strictly for your use to ensure all required documentation and procedures are included and completed.
In order to file for recertification, you must electronically submit the following at the same time:
Print a copy of the Form I-17 from SEVIS and sign the petition, including any continuation pages and supplemental pages A and B. Obtain signatures for all designated school officials listed. If the information contained within the Form I-17 accurately reflects your school and its operations, and you are not required to submit additional evidence, submit all documentation via email to: firstname.lastname@example.org. In the subject line type in "Recertification Package" followed by your school code. If edits need to be made to the Form I-17, submit a petition update prior to submitting for recertification.
If your school is not accredited by a U.S. Department of Education-recognized accrediting agency or an SEVP-identified accrediting agency, additional evidence must be submitted based on your school type. Refer to the Additional Evidence Guide below to determine what evidence is needed. Submit this evidence together with the signed Form I-17. If your school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education-recognized or SEVP-identified accrediting agency, you do not need to submit additional evidence.
You must also submit for recertification via SEVIS by clicking the SUBMIT button to send an electronic petition to SEVP. Only the PDSO can file for recertification. The PDSO must submit for recertification via SEVIS at the same time as he/she submits the recertification package.
When computing the period of time for filing for recertification, SEVP counts every calendar day (including Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays) beginning with the first calendar day after the date of notice. If the last day of the filing period falls on a Saturday, Sunday, or a legal holiday, the period to file for recertification runs until the end of the next day which is not a Saturday, Sunday, or legal holiday. See 5 USC 6103 for a listing of legal holidays.
If you correctly submit a complete recertification package, you will receive a Notice of Confirmation of Complete Filing. This notice serves to inform you that SEVP received your petition for recertification and that the petition has entered the queue for review and adjudication.
If your submission is incorrect, you will receive a Notice of Rejection of Complete Filing. This notice will state the errors in your package and request that you make the corrections and resubmit your recertification package. SEVP recommends that you correct any errors and submit a new package as soon as possible.
Remember: You only have a total of 180 days to resubmit a complete package. No extensions will be granted.
Once your recertification package is in adjudication, you may receive a Request for Evidence. You will have 15 days to respond to the request. Failure to respond to a Request for Evidence may result in the denial of your school’s recertification petition. If no additional evidence is needed and your school continues to operate in accordance with the federal regulations governing SEVP, you will receive a Notice of Recertification.
Federal regulation 8 CFR §214.3 (h)(2)(ii) Consequence of failure to petition. SEVP will serve a Notice of Intent to Withdraw (NOIW) to the school 30 days prior to a school's certification expiration date. SEVP will no longer accept a petition for recertification from the school and will immediately withdraw the school's certification if the school does not petition for recertification, abandons its petition, or does not submit a complete recertification petition package by the certification expiration date, in accordance with the automatic withdrawal criteria in 8 CFR 214.4(a)(3). The school must comply with 8 CFR 214.4(i) upon withdrawal.
If your school would like to have its SEVIS certification voluntarily withdrawn, you must complete the Voluntary Withdrawal Form below. The School President or Owner must sign the form. If you have any nonimmigrant students attending your school they must first transfer or depart the United States before your Voluntary Withdrawal Form is processed. Submit this form-request to recert.SEVIS@ice.dhs.gov.
If you have any questions concerning the recertification process, please call the SEVP Response Center at (703) 603-3400.
SEVP recommends that you review your Form I-17 as soon as possible to determine if it is current and accurate. If you identify a change not previously reported to SEVP you must file the update in SEVIS immediately. The update must be adjudicated prior to filing for recertification. The update adjudication process typically ranges from 60 to 90 days, but could take longer depending on the nature of the update. Filing an update does not change the Certification Expiration Date.
Petition updates are a priority for the SEVP Recertification Team and will be adjudicated as quickly as possible. However, the time needed to process this update does not grant the school an extension for recertification.
The Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) offers a web-based training course titled "SEVIS Training for School Officials." This training provides instruction on the responsibilities and obligations for both school officials and nonimmigrant students in the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS). The course provides guidance on completing the various actions required to update and maintain student information in SEVIS for new and veteran designated school officials. Enjoy the course!
Field representatives are part of the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) and serve as direct day-to-day liaisons between SEVP and SEVP-certified schools.
The SEVP Field Representative Unit (FRU) enhances national security by fostering an understanding of regulatory adherence and Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) data integrity.
Additionally, SEVP field representatives:
As a reminder, SEVP-certified schools are subject to on-site review at any time, per 8 CFR 214.3 (h)(3)(iv). Please note that these reviews are not related to the SEVP field representatives and are not part of their duties.
Prior to deployment, all SEVP field representatives must complete a comprehensive eight-week training program and pass a final exam before deploying to their territory. FRU training courses include the following key elements:
In addition to classroom instruction, SEVP field representatives visit and talk to other federal entities, including U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the Counter Terrorism and Criminal Exploitation Unit, and the U.S. Department of State to stay informed of government partner updates and relevant policies and processes. FRU leadership also adds to and updates training topics based upon stakeholder feedback.
SEVP has now deployed four groups of field representatives for a total of 58. SEVP plans to deploy a total of 60 field representatives nationwide. There are three regional groups — eastern, central and western — comprised of 20 field representatives in each region. Each field representative will spend four days each week in the field with schools and one day in their “home office.” SEVP will continue to provide updates about the field representatives on a regular basis.
Please note that there are two field representative territory vacancies – San Jose, CA and Kansas City, MO. If your school falls within either of these two territories, please continue to contact the SEVP Response Center for assistance with questions and concerns by calling (703) 603-3400 or emailing email@example.com.