Responsibilities and Maintaining F-1 Status while on OPT
After you receive your EAD card from USCIS, email a copy of the card to our office. You may also email the card directly to your international advisor.
Reminders — Opt Rules & Regulations
- You can only begin work when you receive your EAD and can only work during the dates noted on the EAD card.
- All employment must be directly related to your major.
- You are allowed a maximum 90 days of total unemployment while on OPT; after that, your OPT may be canceled.
- Note: full-time employment on OPT means that you are employed in your field of study and you are working more than 20 hours per week.
- You have a 60-day grace period following successful completion of OPT; you must depart the U.S. before this time (OR before the grace period ends you may file for a change of status, transfer your I-20 record to a new school, or begin a new program. Contact your international advisor for more information)
- You must report any changes to employment or address to your international student advisor within 10 days of the change.
- NOTE: STUDENTS ON 24-MONTH STEM OPT – contact your international advisor directly to report any changes in employment (this will require updates to the I-983 training plan also)
On the start date of your OPT, you should receive an email (check your UNLV email account!) from do-not-reply.SEVP@ice.dhs.gov with information about creating an OPT portal account. Follow the instructions to create your account. Once you have claimed your account, future logins will take place through the OPT portal login page.
If you have not received this email, or if you have locked yourself out of your portal account, please complete the Portal Account Reset request form.
Within 10 days of any changes to address or employment (moving to a new address, starting a job, quitting a job, adding a second job, etc.), login to the OPT portal and update your employment information.
Always notify your international advisor after you update your opt portal information in order to request a new, updated I-20. You can request a new I-20 by completing the Reprint I-20 request form.
Make sure that you enter information for all fields in the portal, and remember to provide clear explanation when asked to “explain how the employment relates to your degree.”