U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has made an important revision on the policy that required individuals who applied for a change of status to F-1 students to apply to change or extend their current nonimmigrant status.
With this change, individuals applying for a change to F-1 student will be granted an F-1 status effective immediately following the approval of an applicant’s Form I-539 (Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status). This will save both USCIS and applicants time, effort, and money which was spent on multiple applications to change or extend their nonimmigrant status.
Previously, USCIS required applicants to maintain a nonimmigrant status up to 30 days before their student programs’ start date to avoid gaps in the status. Now, change to F-1 student will be possible to grant before the 30 days period begins, enabling students to avoid the same gaps without applications to change or extend their current nonimmigrant status.
However, USCIS expects applicants who are transitioned to F-1 students before the beginning of 30 days period to not violate their F-1 status by indulging in any employment, including on-campus opportunities.