Step 2: Pay the SEVIS Fee

The Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) is a central computerized system that maintains and manages data pertaining to foreign students, exchange visitors, and their dependents during their program in the United States. SEVIS is monitored by the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP.)

What is the SEVIS Fee?

The SEVIS I-901 Fee is a one-time fee that must be paid by all students seeking F-1/J-1 status. This fee is used to cover the costs of operating the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) and is separate from other visa and reciprocity fees. 

  • The SEVIS Fee CANNOT be paid until you receive your Certificate of Eligibility (Form I-20 or Form DS-2019) from Brandeis University. 
  • The SEVIS fee must be paid at least 3 business days before your visa interview at the U.S. Consulate or Embassy. 
  • Once you have paid the SEVIS Fee you may print out a SEVIS Fee Receipt.  The SEVIS Fee Receipt will be required at your visa appointment. 

Canadian Citizens: Although Canadian citizens are not required to apply for an F or J visa at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate outside of the United States, all Canadian citizens MUST pay the SEVIS fee.  Canadian citizens will need to provide proof that they have paid the SEVIS fee at the U.S. Port of Entry. The SEVIS fee must be paid online at least 3 business days before entering the U.S. in F or J status.


To pay the SEVIS fee you will need to complete Form I-901.  When completing Form I-901:

  • F-1 students may use the Brandeis School Code:  BOS214F00063000 
  • J-1 students may use the Brandeis Program Number:  P-1-01781
  • The name that you use for your SEVIS fee payment must match your name as it appears on your Passport and your Form I-20/DS-2019. 

Who is exempt from the SEVIS Fee?

Continuing students who have not been absent from the U.S. for 5 months or more, and are continuing at the same school, using the same SEVIS ID number are not required to pay the SEVIS fee again when returning to the U.S. or applying for a new visa.  F-2 and J-2 Dependents are not required to pay the SEVIS Fee. 

You can find detailed information about the SEVIS Fee and how to pay it on the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement SEVIS Fee website.

SEVIS Fee Payment Options

Credit Card

The fastest and most convenient method of paying the SEVIS fee is by filling out the online Form I-901 which requires a credit card for payment. 

Check or Money Order

You can pay the SEVIS fee by check or money order.  Checks and money orders should be made payable to "I-901 Student/Exchange Visitor Processing Fee".

You must complete your Form I-901 online, choose the option to pay by check or money order,  and then print a payment coupon.

The money order must be an international money order and the check must be a foreign draft drawn on a financial institution in the U.S. and payable in dollars.

Checks must be from one of the following:

  • Banks chartered or operated in the U.S.

  • Foreign subsidiaries of U.S. banks

  • Foreign banks that have an arrangement with a U.S. bank to issue a check, money order, or foreign draft that is drawn on a U.S. bank.

Continue to Step 3: Prepare for Your Entry to the U.S.

Helpful Resources

SEVIS I-901 Fee Frequently Asked Questions

SEVIS I-901 Fee Guidance

USCIS Instructions on Paying SEVIS I-901 Fee through Western Union

Western Union Locations

SEVIS I-901 Fee Online Payment Site