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Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS)
The Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) is a web-based system for maintaining information on international students and exchange visitors in the United States.
Federal Law requires that Ozark Christian College regularly enters data about all F-1 students into SEVIS. Any changes in an F-1 student's personal and academic status must be reported through the SEVIS system and administered by the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP), a division of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), the largest investigative arm of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
On September 1, 2004, the Department of Homeland Security began mandatory collection of a fee to cover the costs for the continued operation of the Student and Exchange Visitor Program.
This option is available over 130 countries. The Western Union office collects the fee in local currency, and electronically transmits the payment and I-901 data to the DHS. The receipt issued serves as immediate proof of payment for a visa interview or for admission at a POE. Western Union's Quick Pay form must be completed in exact detail. These detailed payment instructions are posted at here.
How will the payment be verified?
The payment will be recorded in the SEVIS system. However, you need to keep the paper I-797 you should still bring the paper I-797 or the internet-generated receipt to the visa interview/POE.
When do prospective students or exchange visitors pay the SEVIS Fee?
The interviewing consular/POE officer will confirm payment by accessing SEVIS. To allow for adequate processing time the fee must be paid at least three business days prior to the visa interview/POE appearance date.
When must continuing students pay the SEVIS fee?
When must continuing exchange visitors pay the SEVIS fee?
Who Does Not Pay the SEVIS Fee?
Started at a school or a program with a Form I-20 or DS-2019 dated before September 1, 2004
Have not completed a program, including students who transferred schools or changed program levels
Have maintained status
Applicants who paid the SEVIS Fee, were denied a visa, and are applying again for the same type of visa within 12 months of the date of the denial (exchange visitors must apply in the same category).
Current students and exchange visitors who have been issued a Form I-20 or DS-2019 with updated information printed on or after September 1, 2004, as long as the original form was dated prior to September 1, 2004.
How can I pay with a check or money order drawn on a US bank if I live outside the U.S.?
The requirement that a check or money order be drawn on a U.S. bank does not necessarily mean that an applicant living abroad must approach a United States bank to make a payment. Many foreign banks are able to issue checks or money orders drawn on a U.S. bank. Accordingly, payment may be made with checks from banks chartered or operated in the U.S., from foreign subsidiaries of U.S. banks, or from foreign banks that have an arrangement with a U.S. bank to issue a check, money order, or foreign draft that is drawn on a U.S. bank.
Can someone pay the SEVIS Fee for me?
Yes. You may have a relative, friend or even a school or program sponsor pay the fee for you. If do not have access to the payment methods described on this sheet, you may find it easier to have someone in the United States pay the fee for you. If someone else fills out the application for you, be sure you give them a copy of your Form I-20 or DS-2019. Whoever fills out the form will need your personal information exactly as it appears on this document.
Do I need to pay the fee before I receive a Form I-20 or DS-2019?
No, you must have a Form I-20 or DS-2019 before you pay the fee.
Do I pay the fee for every Form I-20 or DS-2019 I receive?
No. If you receive acceptance packages from several schools or Exchange Visitor Program Sponsors, please select a school or program and use that Form I-20 or DS-2019 to pay the SEVIS Fee. Fee payment is made for a specific SEVIS ID number.
Do I need to pay the fee if I am already enrolled as an F-1 or J-1?
No. You do not have to pay the fee if you are currently in the United States as a nonimmigrant student or exchange visitor and you have maintained your status.
Am I required to pay the fee if I am extending my program of study?
F-1 or J-1 visa holders applying for an extension of stay are not required to the pay the SEVIS Fee.
Am I required to pay the fee if I change of educational levels?
You do not have to pay the SEVIS Fee if you are an F-1 who is changing educational levels. Examples are:
You graduated from high school and are going directly into college
You received your bachelor's degree and are going directly into a graduate program
Am I required to pay the fee if I transfer schools?
You do not have to pay the SEVIS Fee if you transfer between approved schools. If you are an F-1, your I-20 will have Initial attendance at this school in block 3, but your SEVIS records will show that you have maintained your status and are continuing your education. It will be helpful if you ask your DSO to put "continuing student transfer" in the remarks.
Do I pay the fee again after a visa denial?
You do not have to pay the SEVIS Fee if you have already paid a SEVIS Fee and you are reapplying for the same type of visa within twelve months of the date of initial denial.
Do I need to pay the SEVIS Fee if I need a new visa to return to the United States to continue my studies or participate in an exchange visitor program?
No. When you are applying for a new visa to return to the United States, you do not have to pay the fee if you are reentering to continue a program of study and:
You maintained your status
You have not completed your program unless you are an F student transferring to another school or program within five months of leaving the United States
You have not been out of the United States for more than five months except to participate in a "study abroad" program approved by your school
What happens if my Form I-20 or DS-2019 was issued before September 1, 2004, but was updated and reissued after September 1, 2004. Do I have to pay the SEVIS Fee?
No, however, you need to keep the original Form I-20 or DS-2019 with the original issuance date in case you need to prove you were not required to pay the SEVIS Fee.