Going Global Home Corporate Services University Services Country Profiles Global Store



Find a Job
or Internship

More than 16 million listings updated daily




 :: Career News
 

Hurricane Katrina Relief for F-1 students--- Breaking news from David Ware and Associates Law Firm

2009-01-01
by

 :: Career News

Hurricane Katrina Relief for F-1 students--- Breaking news from David Ware and Associates Law Firm
 

On November 25, 2005, USCIS announced interim relief for F-1 students affected by Hurricane Katrina. For students located in the Hurricane Disaster Area, USCIS is temporarily suspending certain requirements related to on-campus and off-campus employment. The relief only applies to students who: (1) on August 29, 2005, were lawfully present in the US in F-1 status and enrolled in an institution, which is approved by DHS for enrollment of F-1 students and located in an area adversely affected by Hurricane Katrina; (2) are currently maintaining valid F-1 status; and (3) are experiencing severe economic hardship as a direct result of Hurricane Katrina. F-1 students otherwise covered by the announcement, who transfer to other academic institutions, which are approved by DHS for enrollment of F-1 students, remain eligible for the same relief. F-2 dependents will not be eligible to apply for employment authorization.

The 20 hour per week limit of on-campus employment when school is in session is temporarily suspended. The rule that limits an F-1 student to no more than 20 hours per week of off-campus employment when school is in session; the rule that requires a student to be in F-1 status for one full academic year in order to be eligible for off-campus employment; and the rule that requires an F-1 student to demonstrate that acceptance of employment will not interfere with the student’s carrying a full course of study are also temporarily suspended.

F-1 students, who are granted employment authorization will be deemed to be engaged in a “full course of study” for the duration of their employment authorization, provided such students satisfy the minimum course load requirement set forth in the announcement. For undergraduate F-1 students who are granted employment authorization, they must remain registered for a minimum of 6 semester/quarter hours of instruction per academic term, and graduate level F-1 students who are granted employment authorization must remain registered for a minimum of 3 semester/quarter hours of instruction per academic term. In addition, F-1 students granted employment authorization, both at the undergraduate level and the graduate level, may count the equivalent of one class or three credits per semester/quality of on-line or distance educations toward satisfying this minimum course load requirement.

An F-1 student covered by the announcement, who seeks to pursue on-campus employment, must demonstrate to the Designated School Official at the academic institution where the F-1 student currently is enrolled that such employment is necessary to avoid severe economic hardship resulting from Hurricane Katrina.

An F-1 student covered by the announcement, who seeks to pursue off-campus employment, must file a complete Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization, including required supporting documentation, with the USCIS Texas Service Center at:

            USCIS
            Texas Service Center
            P.O. Box 853062
            Mesquite, TX 75815-3062

The front of the envelope, on the bottom right-hand side, should include the following notation “HURRICANE KATRINA SPECIAL STUDENT RELIEF.” Failure to include this notation may result in significant processing delays. An application package is complete if it contains: (1) a properly completed Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization, with the required fee, or if the F-1 student believes he or she is eligible for a waiver of this fee, a written affidavit or unsworn declaration, which requests waiver of the wee and explains the reasons why the student is unable to pay the fee, and (2) Form I-20 with a recommendation fro off-campus employment from the DSO at the academic institution where the F-1 student is currently enrolled. The DSO should sign, date, and include the following notation in the student employment box on page 3 of Form I-20. “Approved for more than 20 hours per week of off-campus employment until February 1, 2006, pursuant to Hurricane Katrina Special Student Relief.” By making this notation, the DSO certifies that the F-1 student is covered by the announcement.

If USCIS approves the F-1 student’s Form I-765, USCIS will send the students an employment authorization document to evidence his or her employment. The employment authorization document will contain an expiration date that will not extend beyond February 1, 2006. If USCIS denies the F-1 student’s Form I-765, USCIS will notify the student of the decision and the reason(s) for the denial.

It should be noted that this temporary suspension of the employment rules will expire no later than February 1, 2006. For other immigration related Hurricane Katrina relief follow this link: http://uscis.gov/graphics/katrina.htm.

Hurricane Katrina Relief Legislation Remains Stalled In The Senate

Despite the House of Representatives passing the “Immigration Relief for Hurricane Katrina Victims Act of 2005 on September 21, 2005, the Senate has not taken up any similar legislation. The House bill provides relief for nonimmigrants who were victims of Hurricane Katrina. The House bill would allow international students and exchange visitors (F, M, & J nonimmigrants) who fell out of status due to Hurricane Katrina to be considered to have maintained status until February 1, 200 so long as they were in status on August 29, 2005. A member of the Senate Judiciary Committee must introduce the bill. Therefore we urge everyone to contact their Senator(s) and encourage them to either introduce the bill if they are on the committee, or have their Senators contact members of the committee asking them to introduce legislation similar to the House bill.

2006 Cap For H-1B Advanced Degree Holders About To Be Reached

As of November 14, 2005 there were only approximately 3400 H-1B advanced degree exemptions left for the 2006 fiscal year. We urge all employers and aliens who wished to apply this year to apply immediately before the cap is met.






 :: Latest Articles
    
© Copyright 2009 Going Global. All rights reserved.