F-1 visa applicants are required to pay a one-time fee of $200 beginning on October 28, 2008 \ to supplement the administration and maintenance costs of the Student and Exchange Information System (SEVIS). The following information specifically addresses fee issues for F-1 students.
Where is the SEVIS ID?
The SEVIS ID is located in the top right hand corner of DVC I-20 and it begins with letter N.
Who pays the SEVIS fee?
• Prospective students with “INITIAL attendance” I-20s who are applying for an “initial” F-1 visa from outside the United States.
• Prospective students with “INITIAL attendance” I-20s who are applying for a change to F-1 status from another visa category.
What about my F-2 dependents?
F-2 dependents do not have to pay the fee.
When do I pay the SEVIS fee?
The fee must be paid at least 3 business days BEFORE applying for your visa, or applying for admission at a United States port-of-entry for those exempt from the visa requirement.
Can I pay the SEVIS fee at a university, consulate or port of entry?
No. At this time the SEVIS fee can only be processed by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) via mail or the Internet.
How do I pay the fee?
The fee can be paid to the DHS by mail or online and must be accompanied by a Form I-901. It can be paid by you or by a third party, inside or outside the US.
Diablo Valley College school code is SFR 214F 01867 000.
You must include this on your form. You must also state that you have a valid DVC I-20.
To pay online
1. Find the Form I-901 at www.FMJfee.com
2. Complete the form online and supply the necessary Visa, MasterCard or American Express information.
• Be sure to write your name exactly as it appears on your I-20 form.
3. Print a copy of the online receipt.
4. Be sure to make copies of your receipt, and keep it with your other important immigration documents.
To pay by mail
1. Obtain a Form I-901 “Fee Remittance for Certain F, J, and M Non-immigrants.”
• Download the form from www.FMJfee.com
• Request the form by phone at 1-800-870-3676 (inside the US)
2. Complete the Form I-901. Be sure to write your name exactly as it appears on your I-20 form.
3. Prepare a check, international money order or foreign draft (drawn on US banks only*) in the amount of
USD$200, made payable to “The Department of Homeland Security”.
4. Mail the completed I-901 and payment to the address listed on Form I-901.
Choose FIRST CLASS MAIL or EXPEDITED DELIVERY so that you will have a receipt to give to the embassy.
5. A Form I-797 receipt notice should be mailed within 3 days of processing the fee.
Be sure to make copies of your receipt, and keep it with your other important immigration documents.
* Many foreign banks are able to issue checks or money orders drawn on a U.S. bank.
You may therefore, obtain a check from: a) a bank chartered or operated in the United States; or b) a foreign subsidiary of a U.S. bank, or c) a foreign bank that has an arrangement with a U.S. bank to issue a check, money order, or foreign draft that is drawn on a U.S. bank.
Will the DHS keep a record of my payment on file?
Fee payments should be entered into your permanent immigration (SEVIS) record but it is strongly recommended that you retain a copy of your fee receipt (form I-797) to use as needed.
I applied to more than one school, and have more than one I-20 form. What happens
if I pay the SEVIS fee for one school, and then I change my mind and decide that I
want to attend the other school?
Is my paid SEVIS fee transferable?
Yes. But you must submit the I-20 form with the SEVIS ID number that you listed on the I-901 form with you to the U.S. consulate/embassy.
What if my F-1 visa application is denied?
The SEVIS fee will not be refunded. However, if you reapply for a new F-1 visa within 12 months of the denial, you will not have to pay the fee again.
For more information regarding the new SEVIS fee requirement or other visa-related matters, contact the International Student Admissions and Services Office at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 925-969-2197
Helpful links. Last updated: 10/02/2014