Proposed Rule Published by USDHS to Eliminate D/S

On September 25, 2020, the US Department of Homeland Security (USDHS) published the  Proposed Rule 85 FR 60526 to eliminate duration of status (D/S) for F-1 students and their F-2 dependents, and J-1 exchange visitors (EV) (including students, researchers/professors, and short-term scholars) and their J-2 dependents. One of the items of this proposed rule requires that individuals in nonimmigrant F-1, F-2, J-1 and J-2 status, seeking admission to the U.S., would be assigned a fixed expiration date of their status and stay in the U.S.  instead of D/S (the duration of the academic or research program).  This new proposed rule  would require nonimmigrant  F-1 students  and J-1 EV   to submit a form, application fee and supporting documents to USCIS in order  to request  extensions of stay  if they need additional time to complete their  academic or research program, begin a new program or to apply for post-completion employment authorization like OPT or STEM OPT. For more details on the proposed rule and procedures to comment on it, please refer to this  NAFSA Summary.  

Please note that this is a proposed rule, it does not take effect immediately and nothing has changed yet. The public has a 30-day period until October 26, 2020 to comment on this proposal, after which a final rule may be published.   UMass Lowell, the UMass University system, our peer institutions and professional associations representing the field of higher and international education and international exchange are now carefully evaluating the Proposed Rule and will soon submit comments to USDHS. We will continue share updated information as soon as it becomes available.