In compliance with Department of Homeland Security (DHS) regulations, the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) requires all admitted international students to submit detailed financial statements before a Form I-20/DS-2019 can be processed. These statements should include the amounts and sources of funds available for educational expenses in the United States.
Admitted students must submit certified bank statements in English verifying that they have sufficient funds available to finance their first year's tuition, books and living expenses. Financial assistance awards may be deducted from the amount to be certified. Students planning to enroll in summer courses are advised to budget an additional amount of money to cover their summer tuition expenses.
Because some embassy officials verify students' financial documents, students should obtain two original copies (with original signatures) of all financial documents. One copy can be submitted to UIC through the Prospective Student Portal while the student retains the other copy for obtaining the visa.
The cost estimate for living expenses covers only minimal essential expenditures. Expenses for clothing, recreation, and incidentals are variable, and the cost of travel outside Chicago is not included. Since students admitted to the United States on student visas are not permitted to work off-campus during the first academic year (thereafter only under limited circumstances), employment should not be considered as a means of support.
It is very important that international students who wish to study at the University of Illinois at Chicago come prepared to financially support the cost of their education during the entire time that they expect to remain in the United States.
Preparing the I-20/DS-2019 Immigration Document Request
To obtain an Initial I-20/DS-2019 from UIC, admitted students must submit a complete I-20/DS-2019 request to the Office of International Services (OIS). A complete I-20/DS-2019 request consists of three items:
- UIC Affidavit of Support - Complete this document in full, including your signature and the names and signatures of your financial sponsors (if any). The UIC Affidavit of Support is a required document and cannot be substituted by other affidavits of support.
- Evidence of Funding - Request a bank statement (or combination of statements) showing a total balance equal to or greater than the estimated expenses for your first year of study at UIC. To determine the amount you must show, find your UIC program at Estimated Expenses. Bank statements must be signed, AND stamped by a bank official, and show a current balance. The bank statement should not be issued more than six months from the date of request.
- Copy of passport - Photocopy your passport's biographical page showing your name and personal information.
Which account types are acceptable for the I-20/DS-2019 request?
The following is a summary of acceptable account types:
- Certificates of Deposit.
- Checking Accounts.
- Education Loans: it must be evident that the person is pre-approved or approved for the loan.
- Fixed Deposits, Fixed Term Certificate of Deposits, Bonds, Time Deposits and Term Deposits: the maturity date or value date must be clearly listed and be before the first day of the semester.
- Provident Funds: the amount available for withdrawal must be stated in the letter.
- Savings Accounts: all forms of savings accounts will be accepted, including demand deposit, current accounts and money market.
- Scholarship Award Letters: must clearly state what the scholarship includes, such as tuition, fees, and books. If the scholarship includes a stipend, it must state the dollar amount per month.
Please click on the following links to view sample financial documents to assist you in submitting proper documentation to our office.
The following is a summary of account types OIS does NOT accept:
- Business Accounts.
- Chartered Accounts: are statements from accountants.
- Demat Accounts: are used for the trade of stocks, securities, and debentures.
- Foreign Exchange.
- Insurance Policies.
- Retirement Funds.
- Salary Statements.
- Solvency Certificate: is a summary of all assets including bank accounts, DE deposits, bonds, property, salary, etc.
- Stock Market Funds, including mutual funds, equity funds/accounts, and yield funds.
Department Awards and Financial Assistance
Teaching Assistantships and Fellowships are awarded through your academic department. If you have received a departmental award that covers the full amount of tuition, fees, and living expenses, then you may be exempt from submitting separate evidence. You must still submit a completed Affidavit of Support Form to your student portal. Evidence from personal funds will be required of all students who have not received departmental support or whose award is insufficient.
Submitting the I-20/DS-2019 request
The Office of International Services is happy to announce that I-20/DS-2019 requests can now be submitted electronically via your UIC Prospective Student Portal. There is no need to mail supporting documents for your I-20/DS-2019 request to the Office of International Services.
To submit documents for your I-20/DS-2019, please log into your Prospective Student Portal, and follow the instructions for uploading your financial document(s), your completed Affidavit of Support Form, and a copy of your passport's biographical page.
How long does it take to process my I-20/DS-2019?
Once the Office of International Services receives your complete I-20/DS-2019 request, please allow up to 5 business days for processing. When your I-20/DS-2019 is ready you will receive an email from OIS outlining your shipping options for your immigration document.
- Regular Post - 4 to 6 weeks for delivery, no package tracking number, free of charge
- Express Shipping - 5 to 10 days for delivery, package tracking number, charges apply
How can I check the status of my I-20 or DS-2019?
To check if OIS has received all documents related to the issuance of your I-20 or DS-2019, and to also check if your I-20 or DS-2019 has been mailed to you, please log into: my.uic.edu with your netID and password, and you should be able to view this information under the UIC Connect tab.
If you have questions about the information in your student portal, please email email@example.com.
Obtaining your F-1 or J-1 Visa Stamp
Once you have received your I-20/DS-2019 from UIC you can take the next step which is to apply for an F-1/J-1 visa at the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate. For an outline of this process, please visit our Travel & Visas page.
How can I request an I-20/DS-2019 for my dependent?
A spouse or unmarried, minor child (under age 21) is eligible for a dependent visa (F-2 or J-2). Extended family members such as parents and siblings are not eligible for a dependent visa.
To request an I-20/DS-2019 for your dependent:
- Fill out the Affidavit of Support Form, indicating your dependent's information on page 1.
- Submit financial documents that demonstrate you have funding to support your dependents in addition to your program of study. For one dependent, you must show $4,500 for one academic year. For each additional dependent, you must show $3,285.
- Passport copy of each dependent.
How do I defer my admission to a later semester?
Students may decide to defer their admission to the University of Illinois at Chicago for many reasons, such as a delay in obtaining a visa or personal reasons. If you would like to defer your admission to a later semester, you must contact your academic department. Your academic department will inform you of the proper procedures to defer your admission. Please review registration requirements before deferring admission to a subsequent semester.
Please contact the Office of International Services (OIS) at firstname.lastname@example.org to inform us of your plans for deferral. If your deferral is approved by the Office of Admissions, OIS will review your financial documents. If your financial documents were issued within the last 6 months, OIS will amend your immigration record and start dates on your I-20/DS-2019 and mail you a new I-20/DS-2019. If your financial documents are more than 6 months old, OIS will request updated financial documents before issuing the I-20/DS-2019. If you are funded through your department, OIS will request an updated letter from your department.
Email email@example.com if you have any questions about deferring your admission.