How it affects your F-1 status
Students may apply for a medical leave of absence through the University Health and Counseling Service. Information on applying for a medical leave of absence can be found at the website of the University Health and Counseling Services. If the University Health and Counseling Service approves an official medical leave from the university, the Office of Global Services (OGS) will be notified by the University Health and Counseling Service through email.
NOTE: The information regarding a student’s medical condition is not shared by the University Health and Counseling Service with any other office. This information is considered to be confidential. The email notification simply states that a medical leave of absence has been approved by the University Health and Counseling Service.
OGS will authorize the student for a medical leave in the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) for government purposes after receiving notification of approval of a medical leave from the University Health and Counseling Service and will email the student to notify them that the medical leave has been approved in SEVIS. Additionally, OGS will issue an updated I-20 that notes the dates of approved medical leave. The following are important points for F-1 students to be aware of regarding how a medical leave affects their F-1 status:
- Students in F-1 status may remain in the U.S. or may leave the U.S. during a medical leave of absence. However, students who live on campus are not permitted to remain in the residence halls while on a leave of absence
- Students may not remain in the U.S. on a medical leave for more than one year. If a medical leave is needed for more than one year, the student will need to notify the OGS and make plans to leave the USA. A new initial I-20 will be needed to return to the U.S. (Please see instructions for obtaining a new initial I-20)
- Students who leave the U.S. during their medical leave may return to the U.S. on their current I-20. You will still need a valid travel signature on your I-20 to return to the U.S. Additionally, if a student has an I-20 that will expire while on a medical leave (please see your program end date in Program of Study section of the I-20) and if they are in the U.S. or have been abroad for less than five months the student will need to apply to the OGS for a program extension prior to the end date of the I-20. This should be done at least a month before the end date on the I-20. (The request for program extension can be found on the OGS website)
- Please click here to apply for a Medical Leave of Absence.