To fall “out of status” means that you have violated an immigration regulation pertaining to your particular immigration status (F-1, J-1, etc.). If this occurs, you may lose the benefits of your status in the U.S., including your eligibility to work. You are at risk of violating your status for any of the following reasons:
- You allow your passport to expire.
- You are not attending the school that you are authorized to attend, that is, the one that issued the Form I-20 or DS-2019 you used to enter the United States most recently.
- You do not follow the correct procedures for transferring from one school to another, or for continuing from one educational level to another.
- You drop below full-time in any semester without first obtaining permission.
- You do not attend school during the fall or spring semester (during the academic year).
- You work off campus without proper authorization.
- You work on or off campus for more than 20 hours per week while school is in session.
- Your program completion date on your I-20 or DS-2019 has passed and you have not filed for a program extension.
If you violate your immigration status, you may be eligible for a process called Reinstatement. Students should speak with the Director of International Student & Scholar Services for more information, as well as review the Reinstatement page and filing list.