The fee is required to cover operational costs of the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS). Each student issued an initial Form I-20 or Form DS-2019 is responsible for paying this fee. Potential nonimmigrants, for purposes of the SEVIS Fee rule, are:
* Those who apply to the Department of State (DoS) or DHS for initial attendance as an F or J nonimmigrant.
* Nonimmigrants in the United States who apply for a change of status to an F or J classification.
* Current J-1 nonimmigrants who apply for a J-1 category change.
Who needs to pay the I-901 SEVIS fee?
* All prospective F and J students from countries where a student visa to travel to the United States is mandatory.
* All prospective F and J students from visa waiver countries (before seeking admission at a U.S. port of entry).
* Any nonimmigrant in the United States applying for a change of nonimmigrant status to F-1 or J-1 status (before applying for a change of nonimmigrant status).
* An F student applying for reinstatement of student status because of a violation of status (before applying with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services).
* An F student who has been absent from the United States for more than five months and wishes to re-enter the United States for continued study in the same field that was pursued before initially leaving the U.S.
* New applicants who are citizens of Canada, Bermuda, Bahamas, and certain other islands wishing to apply for F-1 or J-1 status at a Port of Entry into the United States must pay and process the SEVIS fee before appearing at the Port of Entry.
Note: F-1 and J-1 visa applicants with I-20 or DS-2019 forms issued are required to pay a SEVIS fee before applying for a visa and before going to a U.S. embassy or consulate for their visa interview.
A dependent of an F-1 or J-1 student who will be applying for an F-2 or J-2 visa does not have to pay an I-901 SEVIS fee.
How do I pay the I-901 SEVIS fee?
* A prospective F student with the country of citizenship or country of birth of Cameroon, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, or Gambia must pay by money order, Western Union Quick Pay, or certified check drawn from a U.S. bank. All other prospective F students have the additional option to make a credit card payment at https://www.fmjfee.com/index.html
* The Security and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) will accept third party payments, meaning someone other than the student can pay his/her I-901 SEVIS Fee using the same methods of payment. In cases where students cannot pay the fee by credit card, third party payers are also restricted from paying by credit card.
* For instructions on how to complete the Western Union Quick Pay/Quick Collect form - https://www.ice.gov/sevis/i901/wu-instructions
* Student can access the PDF version of the SEVIS Form I-901. The website is https://www.ice.gov/sites/default/files/documents/Document/2015/i901.pdf
Print and mail in the paper SEVIS Form I-901 with check or money order, according to the instructions on the form.
How much Is the I-901 SEVIS fee?
* For students (F-1) - $200
* For exchange visitors (J-1) - $180
* For spouses and dependent children (F-2 or J-2) of students or exchange visitors - None
For more information, see the SEVIS I-901 Fee Frequently Asked Questions page on SEVP's website, https://www.ice.gov/sevis/i901/faq
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