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Friday, December 9, 2022

International Students Allowed To Stay In US As Long As They Want; No Expiry Date On Visa!

On Friday night, the first-ever bi-annual unified regulatory agenda, rolled out by the Biden administration, having a piece of good news for international students.

Good News For International Students
According to this development, now International students will be permitted to stay in the US as long as they are engaged in studies. This simply means that there will be no fixed expiry date.

Or we can say that the concept of being admitted into the US for ‘Duration of status’ will continue.

As a part of their spring agenda, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has announced the withdrawal of a Trump-era proposed rule.

Which was earlier issued last September, proposing to limit the duration of student visas to four years and in some instances to two years.

In simple words, the ‘duration of status’ concept was sought to be replaced with ‘Duration of Stay’.

Also Read – US Removes All Hurdles In Issuing H1B Visa: More Indians Can Now Get H1B (How?)

No Need To Go Through The Cumbersome Process
With the earlier arrangement, international students could apply for visa extensions.

Although, the proposed process was viewed as cumbersome and the proposed norms were viewed as narrow.

This proposed rule would have also applied to international students who are already present in the US.

This would cause problems for international students, as mentioned by Rajiv S Khanna, Arlington-based immigration attorney.

The period is not sufficient as a four-year cap is definitely shorter than a PhD.

Even it won’t suffice for a bachelor’s degree course because students can opt for an extra semester.

Those, who are seeking optional practical training post their studies – which is up to three years for international students from the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields would have had to seek a visa extension.

No More Added Expenses And Uncertainty
Apart from that, the duration of stay norm would have added to expenses in addition to the uncertainty as regards obtaining an extension.

It seems that the announcement of withdrawal of this proposed rule stems from the Biden administration’s action plan of improving the legal immigration system.

Moreover, the news will definitely cheer over 2.02 lakh international students from India (as per the Open Doors Report – November 2020).

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