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FOR J-1 SCHOLARS AND FACULTY AFFILIATING WITH BINGHAMTON UNIVERSITY

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE FEDERAL I-901 SEVIS FEE


The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal SEVIS I-901 Fee is $180 for J-1 visa applicants.

WHO HAS TO PAY THE SEVIS I-901 FEE

  • You must pay the SEVIS I-901 fee if you are seeking a J-1 visa from an embassy or consulate abroad for initial attendance or initial participation in Binghamton’s exchange visitor program.
  • You must pay the SEVIS I-901 fee if you are a Canadian citizen, and are therefore exempt from the U.S. visa requirement, before you can enter the United States.
  • You must pay the SEVIS I-901fee if you were previously in the United States in J-1 status, completed that program’s participation, departed the United States, and are now seeking to return for a new period of stay as a J-1, even if the previous period of stay was at Binghamton.
  • You must pay the SEVIS I-901fee if you are already in the United States, and you will be filing a change of non-immigrant status application to J-1.
  • Applicants for J-2 dependent visas are NOT required to pay the SEVIS I-901fee.

SEVIS I-901 FEE RULES
The SEVIS I-901 fee must be processed at least three business days before the visa interview, unless you have a printed receipt from an Internet payment.

The SEVIS I-901 fee cannot be paid at the embassy or consulate, or at the U.S. Border.

A visa will not be issued unless the visa officer can verify that the SEVIS I-901 fee payment has been made. However, you may schedule your visa interview prior to paying the SEVIS I-901 fee.
The SEVIS I-901 fee is not refundable. If your visa application is denied, and you decide to re-apply for the same type of visa at a later date, you will not be asked to make a second SEVIS I-901 fee payment as long as your visa application is made within 12 months of the initial denial.

HOW TO PAY THE SEVIS I-901 FEE

Currently, there are three payment methods:

  • payment in U.S. dollars by credit card over the Internet, OR
  • payment in any country’s currency through an agent of Western Union “Quick Pay.”  There are agents in more than 130 countries world-wide, OR
  • payment in U.S. dollars by check, money order or bank draft, drawn on a U.S. bank, and mailed to an address in the United States.

Payment of the SEVIS I-901 fee may be made by you or by any other individual, either in the United States or abroad, including family or friends.  However, anyone paying the fee on your behalf will need to have a copy of your DS-2019 and passport information, or a completed copy of Form I-901.

PROCEDURE FOR PAYING THE SEVIS I-901 FEE
  • Obtain form DS-2019 from Binghamton University
  • Access form I-901 on the internet at http://www.fmjfee.com OR use the form I-901 included with your DS-2019
  • Complete form I-901, answering all questions (you must have a DS-2019 from Binghamton in order to complete form I-901).  Be sure that you enter your personal information exactly as it appears on the DS-2019
  • Pay the SEVIS I-901 fee according to one of the methods described on the reverse side of this form.

Note: to complete form I-901, you must enter the Binghamton Program Number of P104832 if you have been sent a DS-2019.  You must also enter your SEVIS ID number, which is printed at the top right of the DS-2019, above the bar code.  It starts with the letter “N.”

PAYING ON THE INTERNET
Once you have received your DS-2019, you can make the fee payment by submitting form I-901 on-line using a credit card.  The web address is http://www.fmjfee.com

MasterCard, Visa, or American Express debit or credit cards are accepted.  It does not matter if the card was issued in the United States or overseas.  Follow the on-line instructions, include the required credit card information, and print out the payment screen to verify your payment. The printed receipt should be presented at the visa interview or at the U.S. port of entry as proof of payment.  Thus, when paying the fee on the Internet, it is essential that your printer be ready before starting the payment process. Do not exit the receipt page until you have successfully printed the receipt.  You will not be able to return to the receipt page.

PAYING BY WESTERN UNION “QUICK PAY”
Agents who accept Western Union “Quick Pay” are located in cities in 130 countries world wide.  For detailed instructions on this payment method and to locate an agent near you, visit: http://www.ice.gov/sevis/i901/wu_instr.htm

PAYING BY MAIL:
To pay by mail, you must download and print form I-901 from http://www.fmjfee.com or use the paper copy provided with your DS-2019, fill out the form and mail it with your payment to the address below.

Your payment must be in U.S. dollars by check, money order or bank draft, drawn on a U.S. bank. Your check, bank draft or money order should be made payable to: “I-901 Student/Exchange Visitor Processing Fee.”  Also, be sure to print your name and SEVIS ID number in the lower left-hand corner of the check, money order or bank draft.

The need for a check, bank draft or money order in U.S. dollars drawn on a U.S. bank does not mean that only a U.S. bank can issue the document.  Many foreign banks are able to issue checks or money orders drawn on a U.S. bank, because they are chartered in the United States, or because they are foreign subsidiaries of a U.S. bank, or because they have arrangements with a U.S. bank to issue a check, money order, or foreign draft that is drawn on a U.S. bank.

Mail the payment and form I-901 to:                    
I-901 Student/Exchange Visitor Visa Processing Fee
P.O. Box 970020
St. Louis, MO 63197-0020 USA

To send by courier, use the following address:     
I-901 Student/Exchange Visitor Processing Fee
1005 Convention Plaza
St. Louis, MO 63101
United States

Once the form and fee are processed, a paper receipt will be mailed to you. Return courier service is available for an additional $35.

Payment by mail is not the recommended process for fee payment from abroad, as it can take as long as four weeks from the day you mail in the fee to the day that you receive the required receipt in the mail if you are applying from outside the United States, unless you pay for courier service.

SHOWING PROOF OF SEVIS I-901 FEE PAYMENT AT THE VISA INTERVIEW AND/OR THE U.S. PORT OF ENTRY
You must be able to prove that the fee has been paid when you appear for your visa interview, and when you enter the United States.  This is done by presenting a printed receipt, either from the Internet if you made an on-line payment or payment through Western Union Quick Pay, or a mailed receipt if you paid by mail.

Visa officers and U.S. port-of entry inspectors should be able to verify SEVIS I-901 fee payment electronically three business days after payment is processed, but in case of problems, having a printed receipt is the best evidence of fee payment.  If you lose or did not receive a receipt for fee payment, the U.S. government does retain an electronic record that the fee has been paid.

.A visa will not be issued unless verification of the SEVIS I-901 fee payment can be made.

For detailed information on the SEVIS I-901 fee payment process, and for a list of frequently asked questions, visit: http://www.ice.gov/sevis/i901/index.htm

International Student and Scholar Services
Binghamton University Box 6000
Binghamton, New York 13902-6000 USA
607-777-2510 (phone) 607-777-2889 (fax)
isss@binghamton.edu (e-mail)
http://www2.binghamton.edu/isss/(web)
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Last Updated: 5/3/10