F1/I-20 Visa Guidelines for Transfer Students

For more information on becoming a student in America, you can visit these websites:

Step 1

Notify your institution of your intent to transfer to another institution.

A nonimmigrant student is permitted to transfer to a different school provided the transfer procedure is followed. To transfer schools, you should first notify the school you are attending of the intent to transfer, then obtain a FORM 1-20 A-B from the school you intend to attend. The transfer will be completed only if you return the Form 1-20 AB to the designated school official within 15 days of beginning attendance at the new school. The designated school official will then report the transfer to the Immigration and Naturalization Service.

Step 2

In order to be accepted at the Tampa Language Center, you must submit the following documents:

  • Submit a completed and signed application form (<--click here) by fax or email, or regular mail.
  • Pay the application processing fee of $100.00 (I-20 Application fee is different than the registration fee). This can be paid by credit card, check, or wire transfer. This amount covers our administrative expenses and it is not refundable.
  • Submit a copy of the receipt for the I-901 fee and your I-94.
  • Submit a copy of:
    • A current bank statement OR
    • A notarized financial guarantee letter(<--click here) from your sponsor, a current bank statement, and a picture ID of your sponsor.
    *The financial statement must reflect the student's ability to cover tuition and living expenses for at least 3 months(1 quarter) This amount should be $6000 USD for a single student.*
  • Submit a copy of your valid passport and student visa (Valid for at least 6 months more after the presentation day)


Once we have received, reviewed, and verified the submitted documents, we will issue a letter of acceptance and VISA transfer in form within 3 to 5 business days.

Step 3

The VISA transfer form and letter of acceptance must be taken by the student to the institution where the original 1-20 was issued .

Maintaining your status in the United States

Upon entering the United States on an F-1 visa, you are granted F-1 status. In order to remain in status while you study at the Tampa Language Center, you must:

  • Attend classes on a full-time basis (20 hours per week)
  • Keep the 1-20 valid
  • Pay course fees in full
  • If applying for an extension it must be done 30 days before your approved ending date

If you cannot complete the educational program after having been in student status for longer than the anticipated length of the program plus a grace period in a single educational level, or for more than eight consecutive years, you must apply for extension of stay. An application for extension of stay on form 1-538 should be filed with the Immigration and Naturalization Service district office having jurisdiction over your school at least 15 days but no more the 60 days before the expiration of your authorized stay.

  • Leave the U.S. within 60 days after completion of your program
  • Transfer to another school within 60 days after the completion of your program

A nonimmigrant student is permitted to transfer to a different school provided the transfer procedure is followed. To transfer schools, you should first notify the school you are attending of the intent to transfer, then obtain a FORM 1-20 A-B form the school you intend to attend. Transfer will be effected only if you return the Form 1-20 AB to the designated school official within 15 days of beginning attendance at the new school. The designated school official with then report the transfer to the Immigration and Naturalization Service.

Traveling outside of the United States

If you are planning to travel outside the United States while studying at the Tampa Language Center an appointment must be made with the Principal Designated School Official to discuss travel arrangements. Your I-20 must be signed before travelling abroad.

Please note, your F-1 visa and passport must be valid in order to return to the U.S. If your visa has expired, you will need to renew it at the U.S. Embassy.