What is SEVIS?
The Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) is the web-based system that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) uses to maintain information on nonimmigrant students, exchange visitors, and their dependents.
As an F-1 or J-1 student, you will be assigned a specific SEVIS number, and a SEVIS record will be created for you. The SEVIS system will track you from the time you receive your initial I-20 or DS-2019 until you complete your program of study.
The International Student Office is responsible for updating your SEVIS record and we are required to report the following:
- Full-time enrollment
- Failure to enroll
- Dropping below a full-time course load without prior authorization
- Any other failure to maintain student status or complete program
- A change in legal name or address
- Your graduation if it occurs prior to the expected program end date
- Start date of your next session
- Program extensions
- Off-campus employment authorization
- Any other major changes to your program
How much is the SEVIS Fee?
For F-1 students, the SEVIS fee is from $200 USD to $350 USD
For J-1 students, scholars, researchers, and professors the SEVIS fee is from $135 to $220 USD
You Must Pay the SEVIS Fee If You Are:
- A newly admitted WKU student with an initial I-20 or DS-2019 from WKU who will be applying for a visa
- Applying to change your status to F-1 or J-1 from another non-immigrant status while in the United States
- Filing for reinstatement after being out of status while in the United States for more than five months
- Traveling to the United States in F-1 or J-1 status as a Canadian citizen - You cannot pay the fee at the port of entry
You Do Not Need to Pay the SEVIS Fee If:
- You are an F-1 or J-1 student in lawful status transferring between schools in the United States
- You are the dependent of an F-1 student and you have F-2 status or you are the dependent of a J-1 student and you have J-2 status
Paying the SEVIS Fee
You can pay the SEVIS fee online or by mail. We recommend paying online, because it is the fastest method. It can be paid by you or by a third party, from inside or outside the United States.
Remember that paying the SEVIS fee is only the first step of the visa application process so get it done as soon as possible.
If your country of citizenship or country of birth is Cameroon, The Gambia, Ghana, Kenya, or Nigeria, you must pay by money order, Western Union Quick Pay, or certified check drawn from a U.S. bank.
- Go to the SEVIS Fee processing website.
- Once you are on the site, complete form I-901. Be sure to enter your name as it appears on your I-20 or DS-2019.
- Provide the credit card payment information and print a copy of the online receipt.
- We suggest that you keep a copy of your receipt with your other important immigration documents.
- Complete Form I-901 at FMJFee.com. You will get a unique payment coupon number, necessary to validate and process your payment at Western Union. You cannot submit a SEVIS fee payment via Western Union without this coupon number.
- Print a copy of the payment coupon and take it to your local Western Union office.
- Fill out the Quick Collect/Quick Pay Form according to the information found at the bottom of the printed coupon.
- Present the coupon and your payment to the Western Union agent for processing.
A copy of instructions and sample forms can be viewed at and printed from the ICE website.
Frequently Asked Questions
SEVIS fee payments are normally recorded onto your permanent immigration (SEVIS) record. However, you should also maintain a copy of the fee receipt for your own records as you may need it later.
Yes, the SEVIS fee is transferable. But you must take the I-20 form with the SEVIS ID number that you listed on the I-901 form to the U.S. consulate/embassy, in addition to the I-20 form from the school you wish to attend. Be sure to make your intentions clear to the Consular Officer.
The SEVIS fee will not be refunded. However, if you reapply for a new visa within 12 months of the denial, you will not have to pay the fee again.
It is possible to transfer a SEVIS fee payment from one number to another. The basic rules for moving a SEVIS fee payment between SEVIS ID numbers are:
- Only the student or exchange visitor may request the move
- The SEVIS Fee must be moved between SEVIS ID numbers for the same individual
- An additional SEVIS Fee is not required
- The SEVIS Fee amount for the new school or program must be equal to the SEVIS Fee already paid
- A fee transfer may be applicable if you started your current program within one year of the SEVIS fee payment and the previous SEVIS record was not terminated or completed
If you want to transfer the I-901 SEVIS Fee payment information from one SEVIS ID number to another, you need to send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Put Fee Transfer in the subject line of your request.
Date of birth
The SEVIS ID number that you originally paid on
The SEVIS ID number you want to transfer the payment to
Explain why the fee needs to be transferred.
To help speed your request, include a copy of your receipt number. Include information on how to contact you if there are any questions.
SEVP will review your request and determine if the fee can be transferred. If your request is approved, you will receive an email or letter indicating that you can now print your updated I-901 payment confirmation at www.fmjfee.com reflecting the SEVIS ID from your new Form I-20 or DS-2019.
When you apply for any benefit where the I-901 SEVIS Fee will be verified, you will need to provide a copy of the updated I-901 fee receipt.
Helpful SEVIS Links
- SEVIS Fee Payment Tutorial
- SEVIS Fee Payment Site
- SEVIS Fee Status and Payment Confirmation
- SEVIS Fee Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Let us help you understand SEVIS
The International Student Office is here to help. If you have questions or concerns, you can contact us.
Links for J-1 Students
- Applying for a Visa