I-20 Extension

When is an I-20 Extension Needed?

Refer to Section 5 on the I-20 to determine the date by which your studies are to be completed. An F-1 student who does not complete his or her educational program by the completion date noted in Section 5 on his or her most current, valid I-20 must apply for a Program Extension. 

When to Apply

You need to apply for and be approved for the extension BEFORE your current I-20 expires. If you do not get it extended prior to your current I-20 expiration, and you have not completed the degree, you will be considered out of status.​


Any F-1 student who has continually maintained status, is making normal progress and who has a compelling academic, medical or other reason for not completing the educational program by the completion date (#5) on the I-20 is eligible for a Program Extension. A "compelling reason" may include such things as a change of major or research topic, unexpected research problems, or a documented illness, which has interfered with full-time study. A generic reason such as “did not finish” or “needs more time” is an insufficient reason.

Academic suspension and probation are not considered acceptable reasons for a Program Extension. If the reason for an extension is health related, it may be difficult to get approval unless the student has previously been approved for a reduced course load (for medical reasons).

How to Apply

Log into iHawk and complete the "I-20 Extension" e-forms under "F-1 Student Services" - BOTH parts are required.

What you will need:

Part 1

  • Academic Advisor's name and email address –meet with your academic advisor regarding the I-20 extension request you are about to submit.  The advisor you indicate on the e-form will receive an email and will need to verify the reason for and length of extension requested.

​Part 2

  • If your source of funding has not changed (see Section 8 of your I-20), you will not be required to show proof of funding, but you will still need to submit the Funding Info e-form indicating so.
  • If your financial source has changed (ex. previously a GRA and now supported by family funds):
    • KU Funding: If you have a GA/GRA/GTA, Lecturer position, fellowship or departmental scholarship, you must provide the name and email address of the departmental staff person who can verify the salary and benefit information.
    • Other Funding: Upload current evidence of financial support for at least one year of attendance (or until the anticipated completion of degree, whichever is shorter). For the minimum amount, refer to your specific major/program’s estimated cost of attendance.

When can I come to ISS to process the I-20 extension?

Monitor the status of your request in iHawk

When both e-forms are showing "Pending Review" status, your request is complete and ready for review.

Come to the ISS office and meet with an immigration advisor to process the I-20 extension during walk-in advising hours.

Important if you work on-campus

Take a copy of your newly extended I-20 to the Payroll Office in Room 145 Carruth O'Leary Hall for proof that you are eligible to continue working.

Immigration Advising Hours

ISS is open 8:00am - 5:00pm Monday - Friday. 

Walk-in hours:
1:30pm-4:00pm Monday-Friday

Appointment hours:
9:00am-11:30am Tuesday-Friday
Walk-in vs. Appointment
Appointments are for matters ≥ 15 minutes.
Walk-in advising is for matters ≤ 15 minutes.
Walk-ins are on a first-come, first-served basis.

Walk-ins: Withdrawal from KU, concurrent enrollment, curricular practical training*, dependents, duplicate I-20 or DS-2019, extension for I-20*, financial update, J-1 on-campus work permit, reduced course load, social security number, transferring out, and any general questions.
Appointments: J-1 academic training, change of status, economic hardship, curricular practical training*, optional practical training, OPT STEM extension, reinstatement, and extension for I-20* or DS-2019.
*can be conducted during walk-in or by appointment.

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