Authorized Early Withdrawal

On This Page: Request an Authorized Early WithdrawalDropping ClassesReestablish F-1 Status

Authorized Early Withdrawal is used to end your SEVIS record before your program end date. It is a neutral termination reason in SEVIS and allows you to avoid violating your F-1 status for not being enrolled full-time during the semester.

Request an Authorized Early Withdrawal

Important Dropping below full-time without ISS approval is a violation of your immigration status.

Meet with an international student advisor before dropping your classes or filing a general petition for a retroactive withdrawal. The advisor will provide a link to an Authorized Early Withdrawal e-form for you to complete.

After termination:

  • You will have a 15-day grace period to leave the U.S.
  • Your record cannot be reactivated or transferred to another U.S. school.
  • You must end all employment (on or off campus).

You will not be eligible for immigration benefits like OPT or CPT until after you have been enrolled for one full academic year (2 semesters) on a new I-20.

Dropping Classes

If you are planning to drop all classes after receiving approval for an Authorized Early Withdrawal, review the information:

  • Complete Withdrawal Form - Required if you plan to completely withdraw from all of your classes during week three through the last day of classes (NOT FINALS) of a fall or spring semester.
  • Refund Policies - Information about eligibility for a full or partial refund.
  • Medical Withdrawal - Instructions withdrawing for medical reasons.
  • Back2UA Admissions - Information about undergraduate eligibility to return to the university after not enrolling for one or more semesters.
  • Leave of Absence - Required for graduate students who wish to return to the university after not enrolling for 1-2 semesters.

Reestablish F-1 Status

If you want to return to the U.S. in the future, you must follow the steps below to reestablish your F-1 status.

  1. Review the information at Reapplying & Requirements (undergraduates) and Leave of Absence (graduates) and reapply for admission if necessary.
  2. After admission (if applicable), request a new I-20:
  3. Because you will receive a new I-20 with a different SEVIS number, you must pay the SEVIS I-901 fee again.
  4. If your previous visa has expired and you are not a citizen of Canada or Bermuda, renew your F-1 visa.
  5. Enter the U.S. up to 30 days before your I-20 start date.
  6. Complete check-in requirements by your I-20 start date: