University of Houston-Victoria

International Programs

Change to F-1 Visa Status Things to Consider

A change in status (COS) is not automatic.  The decision will be made solely by the immigration official who will adjudicate the change of status application.  The information below is based on USCIS regulations, prior experience with COS applications, and university policies.   USCIS business practices and regulations may change without notice.  We do our best to update the information for your benefit, and will process your COS with the latest information in mind.  However, the student is ultimately responsible for information provided in the COS application and decisions made by USCIS do not reflect the actions of the International Student Services staff.

If your current visa status has been cancelled, revoked, or changed through other actions before your COS to F-1 visa status is adjudicated it is likely that your request will be denied.  There will be no refund of fees paid to you in this instance.

If your application is received by the service center before your current status expires, and if you have not violated the terms of your status, and you meet the basic eligibility requirements, you may be allowed to remain in the United States until a decision is made on your application.  If no decision has been made on the COS to F-1 visa when your current status expires, you will generally be allowed to remain in the United States while the decision is being made.

If the application is denied, you will be considered "out of status" as of the date your original nonimmigrant status expired, and must depart the United States immediately after you are notified of the denial.

Enrollment While Status is Pending
If your present visa status allows enrollment, after the documents and COS application are sent you may register and attend classes.  However, if the change of status is not approved and you are not able to fully return to the previous visa status you held, you may be required to depart the United States before the end of the term of enrollment at UHV.

Tuition Status and Change of Status
If you are currently enrolled, your tuition status will remain the same until the COS to F-1 status is approved.  Once approval to F-1 status has been granted you may no longer be eligible for resident tuition beginning the following term of enrollment, and you will be required to show proof of health insurance or purchase the university sponsored plan prior to the first class day.  Payment for health insurance is included in your tuition and fees, but payment for this item is due prior to the first class day and will not be included in loans or payment plans.  Health insurance requirements are covered in the mandatory orientation for international students.

Travel While Change of Status is Pending
If the change of status is approved and the student departs the united States for any reason thereafter, they will be required to apply for a new F-1 student visa from their home country prior to re-entry to the United States.

If student departs the United States while the COS application is pending, the application will be revoked and the student must apply for a new F-1 student visa from their home country in order to re-enter the United States in F-1 visa status.  Students who know they will leave must notify our office to obtain a new I-20 for the visa process in their home country.