Pending Decision Form for F-1 Students
When you file the I-485 or I-589 application to adjust your status, you are pending permanent residency or asylum. Once the I-485 or I-589 is filed, it may take months or even years before you receive the adjudication from USCIS. As long as you comply with the F-1 visa regulations, your SEVIS record will not be terminated. While your permanent residency or asylum application is pending, you may choose to maintain your F-1 status or not, as shown in the two pathways below. ISSS recommends meeting with an experienced immigration attorney if you have additional questions.
Pathway 1: Maintaining F-1 Status
Although maintaining student status is no longer required once you file the I-485 or I-589 application and receive the receipt notice, ISSS recommends maintaining your F-1 status by abiding by F-1 regulations, including enrolling full-time in Spring and Fall semesters, in case the adjudication result is negative.
- Benefits: If your pending I-485 or I-589 application is ultimately denied, you will have your F-1 status to fall back on.
- Drawbacks: You will still need to pay the ISSS SEVIS fee each semester, and you will be automatically enrolled in the CSU Student Health Insurance Plan even if you are not full-time. (Please note: you can always submit a Health Insurance Waiver in the first 2 weeks of the semester.)
Pathway 2: Not Maintaining F-1 Status
If you have filed the I-485 or I-589 and received the receipt notice, you can submit the Departure Form and request for us to terminate your SEVIS record for “authorized early withdrawal.” USCIS does not notify us that you have filed the application, so if you do not tell us and you do not maintain your F-1 status, our office must terminate your SEVIS record for another reason such as “failure to enroll.” Although “authorized early withdrawal” is a better termination reason, in both cases you are completely counting on your I-485 or I-589 to be approved. You have no back-up plan if your pending application is denied.
- You will not be required to pay the ISSS SEVIS fee each semester and you will only be enrolled in the CSU Student Health Insurance Plan if you are taking 6 or more credits. (Please note: you can always submit a Health Insurance Waiver in the first 2 weeks of the semester.)
- You do not need to enroll in courses. If you have an EAD card issued on the basis of your pending Permanent Residency or Asylum application, you can use it to work off-campus in any job you want.
- If you are on OPT and have an Advance Parole EAD card, you can switch employment authorization to the EAD card attached to your Permanent Residency or Asylum application. This means, after you switch, you will no longer be required to report to our office, can be employed for less than full time, and be unemployed for longer than your OPT allowance. Please speak with your attorney for guidance on this decision.
- If your pending application is ultimately denied, you will be out of status and not have legal presence in the U.S.
Note about Resident Tuition
Once you have filed an I-485 or I-589, you may be eligible to begin establishing domicile to qualify for in-state (resident) tuition. Contact Financial Aid with additional questions.
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