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Maintaining your immigration status

As a non-immigrant visa holder, it is important for you to maintain valid immigration status while in the United States and at UMass Chan. Please contact Immigration Services if you have any questions or concerns about your responsibilities as a non-immigrant visa holder. 

Immigration Documents - Pursue Authorized ActivitiesTravelChange of Address - Health Insurance

Always be aware of the expiration dates on your immigration documents. It is YOUR responsibility to keep track of the following:

Your passport should be valid for at least six months into the future. If you need to renew your passport while you are in the U.S., you should contact your country's embassy in Washington D.C. or local consulate for further instructions.

Your immigration documents (I-20, DS-2019, I-797, etc.) should not expire while you are in the U.S. If you notice that your document is expiring within the next six months, contact Immigration Services. Monthly reminders are sent to department administrators, but ultimately it is your responsibility to keep track of this information. If you notice that your document has already expired, contact Immigration Servies immediately.


Keep your immigration documents in a safe place:

Your immigration documents (I-20, DS-2019, I-797, I-94, passport, etc.) can be costly to replace and can take quite some time to replace in certain circumstances.  Please keep them in a safe location.  If your documents are ever lost, stolen or damaged, please contact Immigration Services immediately for information on how to replace these documents.

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Pursue the activity authorized by your visa status: 

If you are an employee or contingent worker, be sure to notify Immigration Services before your department makes any change to your UMass Chan appointment (change of department, appointment percentage, title, funding amount/source, work location, activities etc.) or if you plan to leave UMass Chan earlier than expected.

If you are a graduate student, be sure that you are enrolled in a full course of study and are making normal progress towards your degree. If your student status changes, you need additional time to complete your program, or if you complete your program earlier than the expiration date on your Form I-20 or DS-2019, please notify Immigration Services immediately. If you are on a period of approved Optional Practical Training (OPT), please review the additional OPT responsibilities.

Do not engage in activities which are not authorized under your nonimmigrant visa status, such as unauthorized activities with another institution or employer or activites at UMass Chan that are not authorized by your current visa status.  There are serious consequenses to pursuing unauthorized activities including termination of visa status.  If you are not sure if an activity would be permitted, check with Immigration Services before taking part in the activity.

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Plan ahead for travel

Check with Immigration Services & review the latest travel information several weeks before traveling outside the United States to make sure you have all necessary documents and signatures.  

Change of Address

If you change your local U.S. address, you need to notify the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Human Resources, Immigration Services and the Graduate School (if applicable).  J1 alien physicians in the U.S. for Graduate Medical Education who are sponsored by ECFMG must also notify ECFMG by updating their address in OASIS.

Maintain health insurance

Be sure your policy meets the requirements of your respective visa status.

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