What is an F-1 Visa?

Posted: July 22, 2021

The F-1 visa is a non-immigrant visa designed for those who want to study in the United States. If you wish to attend a university, college, school, seminary, conservatory, or other academic institution, this is the visa you should apply for.

This visa is issued to applicants who intend to return to their home country after their program of study is complete. However, in some cases, they can participate in post-completion optional practical training, which allows students to participate in work that is directly related to their area of study for up to one year following graduation.

F-1 Visa Requirements

  • You must apply and be accepted into a study program at an SEVP-approved institute in the U.S. SEVP-approved institutions include universities, high schools, seminaries, private schools, conservatories, and language courses.
  • You must be enrolled as a full-time student at the institution.
  • You must be proficient in English or enrolled in courses leading to English proficiency.
  • You must show proof of sufficient financial funds to support your studies in the U.S.
  • You must demonstrate ties to your home country, evidencing an intent to return after you finish studying in the U.S. Remember, the F-1 visa is a temporary visa.
  • You must live outside the U.S. when you start the application process.

Different institutes will have different admission policies. If you want to apply for a full study program, contact the institute of your preference. Once the institute has determined that you are academically eligible and your application is complete, they will issue you an I-20 form. This form will allow you to apply for an F-1 visa at your closest U.S. Embassy or Consulate.

An interview is required for applicants from ages 14 to 79. The waiting time for the appointment can greatly vary. Start the application process as soon as you receive the I-20 form.

While you may apply at any U.S. Embassy or Consulate abroad, we strongly recommend that you start the process in your home country – it may be more difficult to qualify outside your country of permanent residence.

Are you interested in applying for an F-1 visa consider getting help from experienced immigration attorneys, like us at Mubarak Law! We will carefully analyze your case to help you choose the best option. We are available at 407 502 3000. You can also fill out the online form provided at the top of the page and we will contact you shortly.


What is an F1 Visa?

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