While You Are On Optional Practical Training

Learn more about employment and reporting requirements while on standard Optional Practical Training (OPT) and ending OPT early.

General Information

Once your application is approved, USCIS will issue you an EAD. Make a copy of your EAD and write your UMID somewhere on the page. Scan and email to [email protected] with a note indicating you applied for OPT and have received your EAD.

Your F-1 status continues through the OPT period.

You must stop your employment when the end date on the EAD card is reached, but may remain in the U.S. for the 60-day grace period.

You may begin working once:

  • you have obtained the EAD card (you may not begin employment if your OPT has been approved but you have not yet received the EAD in the mail)
  • and the begin date on the card has been reached.

The EAD is not employer specific, so you may change employers at will. However, employment must be directly related to the field of studies. Any employment outside your field of study is unauthorized and is a substantive violation of your status.

OPT Employment Requirements and Reporting

You are expected to be employed in your field of study during OPT, and you are required to submit employer information to SEVIS. The maximum period of unemployment is 90 days.

Ending OPT Early

Office of International Affairs

2106 - James C. Renick University Center
4901 Evergreen Road
Dearborn, MI 48128
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Phone: 313-583-6600
Fax: 313-583-6725