Visa Compliance Fee (VCF) FAQ

  • When did the VCF become effective?

The VCF is a required student fee that became effective and was charged to qualifying students beginning Fall 2017 semester.

  • How much is the VCF per semester?

The assessed fee is $350 per semester, assessed in Fall and Spring semesters only. The fee will not be assessed for study during Summer Term or Winter Intersession.

  • When will the VCF be charged to my fee bill?

The VCF will apply when your fee bill is generated for the next semester, provided you meet the criteria to be charged the Visa Compliance Fee at the time your fee bill is generated.

  • Why was the VCF applied to fall 2017 fee bills so late?

The University did not have an effective mechanism at the time of fee bill generation to identify students who qualify for the VCF. Therefore, the fee was applied in stages, after most fee bills had been generated. Moving forward, the University does not plan for this to occur.

  • When is VCF payment due?

For the fee applicable to fall 2017 semester, the VCF was due October 15. The VCF payment for future terms will be due on the 10th day of the semester. Visit the website of the Bursar for further details.  Consequences for late payment are the same as for other fee bill balances past due.

  • To whom does the VCF apply?

The VCF applies to UConn students who:

1)  have an initial status, active status or reinstatement pending Form I-20/DS-2019 issued by the University of Connecticut for study AND

2) are active enrolled students during the semester for which the fee is applicable.

Students who finish their degree or withdraw from the University by the 10th day of the semester (add-drop deadline) for which the fee is applicable will have the fee removed/reimbursed.

Students who have a Graduate Assistantship will have the fee waived or reimbursed (if already paid), based on a collective bargaining agreement between the UConn Graduate Employee Union and the University.

Incoming J-1 exchange students who study at UConn through an exchange agreement between UConn and their home University will not be assessed the fee, as they pay tuition/fees to their home University.

  • What services does the VCF cover?

The fee covers University expenses to provide visa sponsorship, application processing and visa advising to international students, and to maintain immigration records and meet reporting requirements to the federal government for the sponsorship of student and exchange visitor visas. These expenses include adequate staffing, training and operational costs necessary to meet federal reporting requirements and provide responsible visa sponsorship and advising to UConn international students. This fee is separate from any SEVIS or visa processing fee that international students pay directly to the U.S. government as part of the visa application process.

  • Do other schools charge a similar fee to international students?

Yes, many other schools have either a separate fee or sometimes a separate tuition structure for international students to cover visa administration and/or support services to international students. However, the name of the fee that other schools carry may be different from “Visa Compliance Fee”.

  • Do I have to pay the VCF while on post-completion OPT?

If you are not an active student and are on post-completion OPT, you will not be required to pay the VCF. However, UConn does charge a post-completion OPT processing fee that you will be required to pay at the time of submitting your OPT application.

  • What if I am graduating, but I receive the VCF on my fee bill for the next semester?

If you are graduating at the end of the semester, you do not have to pay the VCF for the next term. After your degree completion is finalized the fee will be removed.

  • What if I am on post-completion OPT but I am still an active student completing my thesis or dissertation. Do I still need to pay the VCF?

This depends on when your post-completion OPT will be starting. If your post-completion OPT begins during fall/spring semester, you may still be required to pay the VCF for that term, depending on your requested post-OPT start date. If your requested OPT start date is 10th day of the semester or earlier, your fee will be removed or reimbursed. If your post-OPT start date falls after 10th day of the semester, you will be responsible to pay the VCF for that semester.

  • What if I have obtained an I-20 from ISSS to apply for a Change of Status, but my Change of Status is not approved by the start of the semester. Do I still need to pay the VCF?

If you are an active enrolled student, and UConn is maintaining an initial SEVIS record for you while your change of status is pending, then you will be assessed the VCF. If you defer your admission in the program to a later semester, the VCF will be removed or reimbursed for that term in which you are not enrolled.

  • What if I receive a Graduate Assistantship in the middle of the semester? Will I need to pay the VCF for that semester?

Your Visa Compliance Fee will be removed or reimbursed.

  • Further questions?

Please contact ISSS international@uconn.edu with VCF policy questions, or the University Bursar bursar@uconn.edu with VCF billing/payment questions.