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How long does it take to get a student visa to the USA?

If you or a loved one are seeking a student VISA to the United States, you may be afraid of the money it will cost you, the time it will take and the red tape you will have to cut through. Getting any visa can be a time consuming and arduous process. It helps to have an idea of what to expect.

What is SEVIS

SEVIS is the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System, which is the computer program used by the Department of Homeland Security to record information about students from foreign countries. SEVIS is the system you will use when applying for a student VISA. The DHS has recently taken measures to make the forms easier to fill out and to understand.

Apply to a School that Accepts Visas

Although it may seem obvious, you will want to make sure that the school you want to attend accepts Visas. Many schools limit the amount of Visa students that they can take during a semester. Planning your studies well in advance will help to avoid any unpleasant surprises.

Filling Out an Application

Once you know what university you want to attend, you will want to apply to the school before applying for a visa. Once you have been accepted, your school will send you an I-20 form which is an official visa application. You may have to fill out several different forms, depending on your circumstances. If you are a traditional student you will fill out a different form than the one used by a vocational student. It can take a few months to get a student visa.

Legal Pitfalls

It is important to follow the conditions of your visa to the letter or there may be consequences. Once you obtain a visa, it is important to follow its rules to the letter. If you overstay on a visa, it may be years before you are able to come back to the United States. Students who violate their student visas can be deported. Typical violations include lying to get a job or getting married to obtain citizenship. Any criminal activity, no matter how small, can get you sent back to your country of origin.


The vast majority of student visas cost around $160.00 from start to finish. Work and religious mission visa cost a bit more. Depending on your country of origin and the circumstances surrounding your studies, you may want to ask an attorney to help you.

Consulting with an Attorney

If your student visa application requires the assistance of a Florida Immigration Law Counsel, be sure to pick someone who understands the law, is willing to do the necessary research to argue you case and has years of experience in immigration law. Check out their reputation online and  make sure they are in good standing with the Florida bar association. America is a country that offers a good education and  many fantastic attractions. Don’t let paperwork get in the way of enjoying all our beautiful country has to offer.

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augusta free press
augusta free press