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F-1: Extend Program Completion Date

F-1 students are admitted to the United States for “Duration of Status,” which means that they may remain in the US for the duration of their program as stated in item 5 of the I-20 “Certificate of Eligibility for Non-Immigrant (F-1) Student”, or get the program extended BEFORE it expires if the student needs additional time to complete the program.

Code of Federal Regulations (CFR): 8 CFR 214.2(f)(7)(i)

Reasons for Program Extension Approval Timeline
To be granted a program extension, however, F-1 students must have continuously maintained F-1 status and “the delays must be caused by compelling academic or medical reasons, such as changes of major or research topics, unexpected research problems or documented illnesses. Delays caused by academic probation or suspension are not acceptable reasons for program extensions” [8 CFR 214.2(f)(6)(iv)]. F-1 students must request an extension of stay at least 60 days before their I-20 expires.  You can request your first extension online by completing the I-20 Program Extension Request Form through the ISSS portal. If you need a second or third extension, you must first meet with an ISSS advisor.

Steps to Submit I-20 Program Extension Form:
Please keep in mind that you must submit this request at least 60 days before your I-20 expires. If you submit this request on or after your I-20 has expired, we will not be able to assist you. 

  1. Log into your ISSS portal & go to tab 4
  2. Fill out the form request
  3. Upload your Study Plan, Declaration of Finances and Proof of Funding
  4. Add your Academic Advisors Name and Email address
    • they will need to approve that you require further semesters to complete your degree requirements
  5. Hit submit

Once your academic advisor has approved this form, we will be able to move forward with processing you an updated I-20. Please allow at least 7-10 business days to process your request and receive an updated I-20.