How to Apply for OPT

Please follow each of the steps below to ensure that you apply for OPT correctly. If you have any questions throughout the process, please email your appointed OISS advisor or oiss.advisor@unh.edu

Step 1

  • Complete an OPT Information Session by enrolling in the online OPT training course in Canvas. To request enrollment in the course, please email oiss.advisor@unh.edu and include your full name and UNH ID number.

Step 2

  • Complete and submit OISS's online OPT Request Form
    • Login to eOISS
      • Under the heading F-1 Practical Training, choose "OPT Request Form"
    • When completing your eForm, you will need to upload:
    • Before submitting your eForm, please meet with your academic advisor.
      • After you submit your eForm, your academic advisor will be sent an email notification to support your request.

Step 3

  • An OISS Advisor will review your eForm and contact you with any questions. This may take 3-5 business days.
  • If appropriate, the OISS Advisor will issue a new Form I-20 with a recommendation for Optional Practical Training (OPT).

Step 4

  • Compile the following documents to prepare your application that you will mail to USCIS:

Application Documents (in order from top to bottom):

  • 2 passport style photographs less than 30 days old (with your SEVIS Number written lightly in pencil on the back)
  • Personal Check, Money Order, or Certified Bank Check for filing fee made out to the "U.S. Department of Homeland Security" (do NOT abbreviate). Check the current filing fee.
  • Completed Form G-1145
  • Completed and original Form I-765 hand signed in black ink
  • Copy of new Form I-20 with OISS Advisor's recommendation for OPT. Remember to sign it.
  • Copies of ALL previously issued I-20s (front and back – meaning pages 1 and 2 of each I-20) (order them from newest down to oldest)
  • Copy of your passport photo page and passport expiration page
  • Copy of your student visa
  • Copy of most recent I-94 record
  • Copy of previous EAD (front and back), *if applicable

We recommend single-sided photocopies and do not staple your documents together.

Step 5

Meet with your OISS advisor to review the application and the remaining timeline of the application process.

Step 6

Submit a complete application to the USCIS no earlier than 90 days before your graduation date

Mail your application to:

(Effective January 21, 2021)

For Priority Mail (USPS) deliveries:
USCIS
PO Box 805373
Chicago, IL 60680

 

For FedEx, UPS, & DHL deliveries:
USCIS

Attn. I-765 C03

131 South Dearborn, 3rd Floor

Chicago, IL 60603-5517

Note: OPT Filing Online

 

NOTE: OPT Filing Online – At this time, OISS does not recommend the use of the USCIS online filing system for OPT applications. Students that chose to file online do so at their own risk and must understand that OISS is unable to provide assistance with online filings.

Students are advised to submit paper copies of the I-765 and supporting documents to USCIS for processing. This long-standing application method has proven to be reliable and successful.

With the online filing system being new, there is an increased risk for complications and difficulties. Therefore, until reliability data is available and supports the use of online filing, paper filing is the advised application method.

If you do wish to file online, you can do so only after you complete Steps 1, 2, 3, and 4.

 

NOTEOnce authorization to engage in OPT has been granted and an EAD has been issued, authorization may not be rescinded or canceled. Consult with OISS before taking any action that may jeopardize your OPT.