application and ensures it is complete, they will inform you in writing if you need to attend a biometric
services appointment. If an appointment is necessary, the notice will provide you the location of your local
or designated USCIS Application Support Center (ASC) and the date and time of your appointment or, if you
are currently overseas, instruct you to contact a U.S. Embassy, U.S. Consulate, or USCIS office outside the
United States to set up an appointment.
If you are required to provide biometrics, at your appointment you must sign an oath reaffirming that:
1. You provided or authorized all information in the application;
2. You reviewed and understood all of the information contained in, and submitted with, your
3. All of this information was complete, true, and correct at the time of filing.
If you fail to attend your biometric services appointment, USCIS may deny your application. Starting March
22, 2019, USCIS will accept only the new (02/04/2019) version of Form I-539 and Form I-539A, which
require each applicant and co-applicant to pay an additional $85 biometrics fee, and attend an
appointment that will be scheduled at a USCIS ACS where biometrics such as fingerprints will be collected.
The new Form I-539A takes the place of the Form I-539 Supplement A of prior versions, for applications
involving multiple individuals such as family members. The new forms became available on March 8, 2019.
Form I-539 is used by certain nonimmigrants to apply for extension of stay or change of status, and by F-1
and M-1 students to apply for reinstatement.
What is the difference between applying for a change of status to F-1 within the U.S. and applying for F-1
status outside the U.S.?
Applicants should note that applying for a change of status to F-1 in the U.S. does not give the bearer an F-1
visa in his/her passport. The student will receive F-1 status if the change of status is approved by USCIS;
however, if the student travels outside the U.S., he/she will need to reapply for an F-1 visa to reenter the
U.S. A student who applies for and is granted F-1 status outside the U.S. is given an F-1 visa in his/her
A nonimmigrant requesting F-1 status from within the U.S. does not receive F-1 benefits (e.g. working on
campus, CPT, etc.) until USCIS has approved his/her application, even if the nonimmigrant has been
attending classes while the change of status application is pending. Additionally, as of June 1, 2012, for both
ELIS and paper filings, USCIS will no longer return a stamped I-20 to the applicant after a change of status
application is approved.
Please note that Elgin Community College recommends all potential F-1 students apply for an F-1 visa at
the U.S. embassy or consulate in their home country.
Copies. You should submit legible photocopies of documents requested, unless the Instructions specifically
state that you must submit an original document. USCIS may request an original document at the time of
filing or at any time during processing of an application or petition. If USCIS requests an original document
from you, it will be returned to you after USCIS determines it no longer needs your original.
NOTE: If you submit original documents when not required or requested by USCIS, your original documents
may be immediately destroyed by USCIS.
Translations. If you submit a document with information in a foreign language, you must also submit a full
English translation. The translator must sign a certification that the English language translation is complete
and accurate, and that he or she is competent to translate from the foreign language into English. The
certification must include the translator’s signature. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS)
Center for International Education and Programs at Elgin Community College | 1700 Spartan Drive, B105 | Elgin, IL 60123
Email: email@example.com | Phone: +1.847.214.7809 | Fax: +1.847.931.4897