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Leave of Absence

About Leave of Absence
  • A Leave of Absence allows students to take a break of 5 months or less and return to Concordia using the same SEVIS ID number/I-901 fee.
  • Students must depart the US during the Leave of Absence.
  • Leave of Absence is a Termination to the SEVIS record (termination reason is "Authorized Early Withdrawal").
    • As such, students must depart the US within 15 days or the future SEVIS correction to active status will be denied.
  • Students must be maintaining F1 status at the time the Leave of Absence is requested. Students must attend classes, request the Leave of Absence in SEVIS, then stop attending classes, in that order. 
    • This information will be asked on the SEVP Request for Evidence at the time of requesting the record correction to active. If this order is not followed, the correction to active status will be denied.
  • ISS recommends students request a Leave of Absence whenever possible since this is the only SEVIS termination reason that allows a 15 day grace period to depart the US. All other termination reasons require students to depart the US immediately.

How to Apply for a Leave of Absence from Concordia:

1. Make an appointment with your academic advisor to talk about the Leave of Absence.

2. Make an appointment with your F1 advisor at ISS to request the Leave of Absence in SEVIS.

3. Complete the University Withdrawal Form
  • Note: F1 regulations require students to still be maintaining F1 status ie. attending classes at the time the Leave of Absence is requested in SEVIS.
4. Check your student account to make sure your balance is fully paid.

5. Make sure your I-20 travel signature will be valid on your return date. See ISS for a new travel signature if needed.



Note: If you have already started a request, do not start a new request. Please go to your User Home Page to continue working on your request.
How to Come Back to Concordia:

1. Complete the Concordia Application for Readmission online.
  • This only applies to students who have been gone longer than one semester.
  • If you have been gone one semester or less, contact your Academic Advisor with your planned return date.
2. Once you are ready to come back, contact your F1 advisor at ISS about your I-20.
  • If you have been outside the US for less than 5 months, your SEVIS record will be reactivated. Contact ISS at least 30 days before you plan to return to request the reactivation.
  • If you have been outside the US for more than 5 months, you will need a new initial I-20, new SEVIS I-901 fee, and possibly a new F1 visa. Contact ISS at least 3 months before you plan to return to request a new initial I-20. F1 immigration regulations require students to wait one academic year before being eligible for CPT or OPT benefits, so be aware that you will need to wait one academic year for these benefits.