Top Issues Reported in NAFSA IssueNet


NAFSA IssueNet offers international educators powerful tools to report trends from the field. You are welcome to Report an Issue to NAFSA on the emerging obstacles or challenges you are encountering in your work with students and scholars. Together, we have Strength in Reporting!

Report an Issue to NAFSA IssueNet

The International Student and Scholar Regulatory Practice Committee (ISS RP) identifies regulatory practice issues that need action through government agency liaison. ISS RP members monitor IssueNet reports and Network NAFSA's international student and scholar communities on a regular basis to analyze trends in our field. Each quarter, ISS RP connects NAFSA members with the issues and trends reported through IssueNet, by summarizing the top 3-5 topics reported, and the most recent liaison engagements and successes.

Quarterly Trends in IssueNet

March 2019 Quarterly Summary

  • Continued reports on errors on I-94 electronic admission records, and inconsistent guidance from CBP and deferred inspections on appropriate steps to request corrections.
  • Higher level administrative processing and visa denials reported, specifically for U.S. consulates in China, Iran, and India, with additional scrutiny due to the lack of entrance exam (GRE or SAT) requirements for admission.
  • Continued reports on CLAIMS issues. Many SEVIS records are still not being updated after OPT/STEM OPT is approved. SEVIS helpdesk is requiring institutions to submit tickets to correct record so that students can enter employment data in SEVIS portal.
  • Continued EAD mailing issues with cards not delivered for more than a month after approval as well as excessive time to issue replacement card.
  • Continued reports of inconsistencies in EAD approved time frame from Potomac Service Center with USCIS approving more than 12 months on initial, post-completion OPT EADs.

September 2018 Quarterly Summary

  • Continued reports on CLAIMS-SEVIS data interface issues
  • Reports of USCIS RFEs and denials on various issues, including counting CPT towards eligibility for OPT and burdensome RFE requests
  • USCIS communication issues, including case numbers not found in online case status system, delays in receiving receipt notices, and not receiving premium processing RFEs by fax
  • Errors on I-94 admission records and other port of entry issues

July 2018 Quarterly Summary

  • OPT Issues (counting CPT and OPT; CLAIMS-SEVIS interface)
  • Bridge Applications
  • H-1B RFEs
  • Unlawful Presence Policy
  • Resources

April 2018 Quarterly Summary

  • I-765 (OPT) processing times-excessive (90+ days, some much longer)
  • EAD mailing issues (USCIS sent documents, never delivered, returned as undeliverable)
  • CLAIMS not interfacing with SEVIS for OPT approvals, or erroneously updating as approved when the petition is still being adjudicated.
  • Increased I-515A issues where DSOs are not receiving notification, or are receiving very delayed messages

January 2018 Quarterly Summary

  • H-1B denials and the 60-day window
  • SRC refusals of Authorized Early Withdrawal (AEW) reactivation requests
  • EAD cards not being received
  • Increased scrutiny at consular offices

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NAFSA IssueNet lets NAFSA members report regulatory and policy issues of concern and contact NAFSA regional volunteers for assistance.