Office of Admissions
International Student Services

Temporary Absence of Less Than 5 Months

Circumstances may arise where an F1 student needs to discontinue participation in a program of study and take a temporary absence outside of the United States for five months or less.  To request an authorized withdrawal from the program students must contact a Designated School Official (DSO) to let them know the reason for an absence and when they plan to depart the United States.  (A student may not take an authorized withdrawal and remain in this country lawfully.) The student's I-20 will be placed in Terminated status with the reason to be Authorized Early Withdrawal.  The student has 15 days to depart the United States when the SEVIS I-20 record has been terminated.

The U.S. Customs and Border Patrol officials will not readmit an F1 student returning to the United States with a SEVIS record in Terminated status.  The student may request the I-20 record to be re-set to Active status to allow re-entry when the following criteria are met:

  • The student's I-20 was terminated for reason of Authorized Early Withdrawal
  • The student departed the United States within 15 days of the SEVIS I-20 termination. (Students should keep travel tickets and itenarary documentation to show this.)
  • The student seeks readmission to the United States within five months of departure

Students who must depart the United States unexpectedly during a term of study should take the following steps to support a request for re-entry to their program at UHV.

Request the Withdrawal

  • Send an email to to notify the DSO you plan to withdraw from classes and depart the United States.  Include your reason(s) for leaving and your date of departure.  Scan and attach copies of your travel tickets. 
  • The DSO will remove any registration holds on your record to allow you to withdraw from classes.  It is the student's responsibility to carry out this step.
  • The DSO will terminate your I-20 and is authorized to determine whether your absence warrants the Authorized Early Withdrawal.  Students should request an email response from the DSO to confirm that the Authorized Early Withdrawal was the termination reason.
  • Student and all F1 dependents listed on the UHV I-20 must depart the United States within 15 days. 

Request the Return Within Five Months

  • Student should email and notify the DSO of their intention to return to UHV to resume classes.  This must be done 60 days before the first class day of the new semester.  The DSO will confirm the student's permission to resume the program in the UHV academic school.
  • The DSO will notify SEVIS and request the SEVIS I-20 record be returned from Terminated to Active status.  The DSO must submit a letter to SEVIS documenting the following:
    • Date the student last attended classes
    • Date the student requested the temporary absence
    • Date the student departed the United States
    • Date the student will return to the United States
    • Start date of next available session for the student
  • When the SEVIS I-20 has been re-set to Active status, the DSO may print a new I-20 for the student's re-entry and notify the student that it is ready for delivery.  The student must present the new I-20 for re-entry when arriving at a U.S. port of entry.