The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has a database to keep track of all F and J visa holders, called the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS). All schools that admit F1 students and J1 exchange visitors are required to use this database to issue forms and report certain events to DHS. DHS began collecting a SEVIS fee on September 1, 2004, to cover the costs of running the SEVIS program. This fee is currently $200 for F1 students and $180 for J1 students.
As an F1 student or J1 Exchange Visitor coming to begin a new program at the University of Colorado at Boulder, you will have to pay this fee prior to applying for your F1 or J1 visa (or for citizens of Canada , Bermuda or the Bahamas , prior to entering the U.S. as an F1 student or J1 Exchange Visitor). However, you may make your appointment at the consulate/embassy before paying the fee and receiving a receipt.
This fee is charged to all F1 students or J1 Exchange Visitors whose form I-20 (for F students) or form DS2019 (for J exchange visitors) was issued on or after September 1, 2004 to begin a new program. The fee is generally not charged to those transferring from one program to another, or from one school to another. Family members accompanying the principal F1 student as an F2 dependent, or accompanying the exchange visitor and entering as J2 dependents are not required to pay this fee.
Situations In Which You Must Pay the SEVIS Fee:
Generally, if you are coming to the U.S. to begin a new program, you will have to pay the SEVIS fee before you apply for your F or J visa. For a more specific list of who is required to pay the SEVIS fee, please see: www.colorado.edu/oie/isss/SEVISfeerequired.html
Situations in Which You do NOT have to Pay the SEVIS Fee:
If you'd like to view the list of those who are exempt from paying the fee, please see: www.colorado.edu/oie/isss/SEVISfeenotrequired.html
Payment of the SEVIS fee:
All SEVIS fee payments must be accompanied by Form I-901. You can download this form at: http://www.FMJfee.com.
You will need to have the University of Colorado at Boulder 's school code (for F1 students - DEN 214F00155000) or program number (for J1 exchange visitors - P-1-00066) to complete this form. You will need your SEVIS number from your Form I-20 or DS2019. That number is located in the top right corner of the form and begins with the letter N.
Payment can be made in 3 ways:
1) By credit card over the Internet at http://www.FMJfee.com
Once you have paid on this web site, please make sure to print your receipt notice as proof of payment and take it with you to your visa appointment.
2) By Western Union Quick Pay service. Quick Pay is available in 130 countries. If it is offered in your home country you may pay with local currency. For more information and instructions go to http://www.ice.gov/sevis/i901/index.htm. Print the instructions and a completed sample Western Union form to help the Western Union Agent process the payment correctly.
3) By mail to an address in St. Louis, Missouri, USA. Payment by mail must be done by a check, money order, or bank draft, drawn on a U.S. bank in U.S. dollars. Checks must be made payable to “I-901 Student/Exchange Visitor Processing Fee”.
To pay by mail you may use an Internet generated coupon. Go to the website, http://www.FMJfee.com, enter basic information, print out a coupon, and then mail your check or money order along with the
I-901 form, to the address listed below. Once the information and fee are processed, SEVIS will then be updated with your fee payment information.
Addresses for mail payment option:
For regular mail:
I-901 Student/Exchange Visitor Processing Fee
P.O. Box 970020
St. Louis, MO 63197-0020
For express/courier delivery:
I-901 Student/Exchange Visitor Processing Fee
1005 Convention Plaza
St. Louis, MO 63101
Phone: 314-418-6618 (U.S. country code 011)
For those paying by mail, when the fee has been processed, a receipt notice will be issued and sent to you by airmail. Bring this receipt to your visa appointment.
If you wish to receive the receipt by expedited courier delivery, you will have to pay an additional USD$30 extra for the service. See the
I-901 instructions for more details.
Citizens of India and China:
There are plans for a pilot program in India and China in which the SEVIS fee may be paid directly to the consulate where you apply for your visa. We do not have details of this as yet, so please check the U.S. consulate website where you will apply. If you do not find any information about the pilot program, then pay the SEVIS fee by internet, Western Union Quick Pay, or mail.
If Your F1 Visa is Denied:
If your F1 visa is denied, and you decide to try to obtain the visa again for a later semester (for the same program and in the same category) you will not have to pay this SEVIS fee again for the 12 months following the date of denial of the visa. If you are an undergraduate student (admitted to a bachelor degree program), please contact the Office of Admissions to request a deferral. If you are a graduate student (admitted to a master's or doctoral program), please contact your department to request a term change. If your request for a term change is approved, the department will notify the Office of Admissions. The Office of Admissions will send you a new Form I-20.
If Your J1 Visa is Denied:
AND YOU ARE A J STUDENT, and you decide to try to obtain the visa again for a later semester (for the same program and in the same category), you will not have to pay this SEVIS fee again for the 12 months following the date of denial of the visa. If you are an undergraduate student (admitted to a bachelor degree program), please contact the Office of Admissions to request a deferral. If you are a graduate student (admitted to a master's or doctoral program), please contact your host department to request a term change. If your request is approved, the department will notify the Office of Admissions. If you need a new DS2019, it will be sent to you by the ISSS after notification by the Office of Admissions.
AND YOU ARE A J SCHOLAR COMING TO TEACH OR DO RESEARCH, and you decide to try to obtain the visa again (for the same program and in the same category), you will not have to pay this SEVIS fee again for the 12 months following the date of denial of the visa. Please be sure to contact your host department and ISSS so that we can amend the start date of your program for you and also send you a new DS2019.
Timing of the Payment of the SEVIS Fee:
You must pay the SEVIS fee sufficiently in advance of your visa appointment to allow for verification of the fee payment. If you pay the fee via credit card over the internet, you should print a receipt as proof of payment. If you use the Western Union Quick Pay option, be sure to get a receipt from Western Union. Note that you cannot pay the SEVIS fee before you receive the I-20 or DS2019 because you need to know the SEVIS number from the form. That number is located in the top right corner of the form and begins with the letter N.
If you decide to pay the fee by mail, make sure you pay for it as early as possible. The fee payment will take about 3 business days to post in SEVIS, so you should make sure your mail-in payment arrives at least 3 business days prior to your visa appointment. However, you should have a notice of receipt with you at the time of your visa appointment, so we strongly recommend paying early enough for the receipt notice to get to you before your appointment.
Prospective Students Applying to More Than One University:
It is not uncommon for prospective students to receive I-20/DS2019 forms from more than one institution. This means you might pay the SEVIS fee using the SEVIS information from one university's form, and then apply for your visa using a different university's form. In this case, we strongly recommend you take the following to your visa interview:
You may also mail or email SEVP (Student and Exchange Visitor Program) to try to transfer your payment from one SEVIS number to another. Please go to the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement web site for more information http://www.ice.gov/sevis/i901/faq.htm.
More information about the SEVIS fee can be found at the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement web site:
Check the U.S. Embassy website where you will be applying for a visa for more information about the SEVIS fee.
If you have any questions about the SEVIS fee, please contact ISSS: firstname.lastname@example.org
© 2003 Regents of the University of Colorado