F-1 STUDENTS SEEKING OPTIONAL PRACTICAL TRAINING CAN NOW FILE FORM I-765 ONLINE
WASHINGTON U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) on April 12nd announced that F-1 students seeking optional practical training (OPT) can now file Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization, online if they are filing under one of these categories:
(C) (3) (A) – Pre-Completion OPT;
(C) (3) (B) – Post-Completion OPT; and
(C) (3) (C) – 24-Month Extension of OPT for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) students.
OPT is temporary employment that is directly related to an F-1 student’s major area of study. Eligible students can apply to receive up to 12 months of OPT employment authorization before completing their academic studies (pre-completion) and/or after completing their academic studies (post-completion).
Eligible F-1 students who receive STEM degrees may apply for a 24-month extension of their post-completion OPT. The option to file Form I-765 online is only available to F-1 students filing Form I-765 for OPT.
If an applicant submits Form I-765 online to request employment authorization on or after April 15 but is eligible for a different employment authorization category, USCIS will deny the application and retain the fee.
As USCIS continues to transition to paperless operations, the agency will work to expand online filing for Form I-765 to additional categories. The online filing allows applicants to submit forms electronically, check the status of their case anytime from anywhere, and receive notices from USCIS online instead of waiting for them in the mail.
USCIS is using innovation and technology to meet the needs of applicants, petitioners, and employees. Regardless of the paper or electronic format of an application or petition, USCIS is committed to ensuring a secure and efficient process for all.