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Frequently Asked Questions Regarding I-20 or DS-2019 Issuance

This webpage is designed to provide guidance on the most common questions submitted by students in the process of obtaining an I-20 or DS-2019 form.

Can I find out the status of my I-20 / DS-2019 form issuance (has it been sent, and if not, why)?
Yes, you will receive periodic updates on the status of your I-20 or DS-2019 via email. Upon admission to UC you will receive an email from us indicating what documents, if any, are missing. Each time additional documents are received you will receive an update on the status of your I-20 or DS-2019. When your I-20 / DS-2019 is issued you will receive an email indicating that it has been mailed and to what address it was mailed. You can also request an update on the status of your I-20 or DS-2019 by sending an email to

Is there a deadline for submitting the Financial Certification Form?
No. There is no deadline for submitting financial certification forms to UC International Services. You simply will not be issued an I-20 or DS-2019 until they are received in proper form. Keep in mind that it may take several months to obtain a visa and you will need your I-20 / DS-2019 to apply.

My department has not yet made decisions on funding. Can I wait until I hear from my department about funding before I send the financial certification form?
Yes. Again, there is no deadline for submitting the financial certification forms. You simply will not receive your I-20 or DS-2019 until the documentation of your funding is received.

If there is a problem with the financial certification documents submitted will UC International Services contact me?
Yes. Anytime a student submits financial certification documents that are incomplete or inadequate, UC International Services will send an email or letter (if email is not available) to the student explaining the problem(s). Note: This email will be sent to students' UC email account, which is provided at confirmation of admission. For help, contact UCit.

My funding from UC is equal to or greater than the amount of expenses required by UC International Services to be issued an I-20 / DS-2019. Do I need to submit additional financial documents to UC International Services?
No. If the amount of funding coming from your department exceeds the amount of funding required by UC International Services to be issued an I-20 or DS-2019 you do not need to submit additional financial documents.

I have been awarded University funding (a scholarship or assistantship). Can I count the amount of the award as a source of support for subsequent years of study?
Yes. Any award given by the University (such as a UGS) that covers a full academic year can be counted as a source of support for all years of expected study.

Do I have to submit financial documents in U.S. dollars?
No. Your financial documents do not have to be submitted in U.S. dollars, although it is helpful that any document you submit in foreign currency contains the U.S. dollar equivalency. It is perfectly acceptable to submit documents in foreign currency such as RMB, Rupees, or Euro.

I need to have my original financial documents to apply for the student visa. Can I submit copies of my documents to UC International Services and keep the originals?
Yes, provided the original financial documents are scanned and emailed to UC International Services ( Documents should be scanned as PDF files (not JPEG, RAR, etc.) and all documents should be scanned as one PDF file. Do not send a separate PDF file for each document you are submitting. The name of the student should appear somewhere in the title of the PDF file.

Can I be issued an I-20 or DS-2019 based on providing financial support for one year of study?
No. All students must provide financial support for all years of study needed to complete a degree. That is two years for Masters or Associates degrees, five years for a Bachelors degree or six years for a Doctorate degree. Funds for the first year of study must be documented and available. Funds for subsequent years of study must be attainable as demonstrated by income from employment or investments. This typically occurs when a sponsor (family or friend) is involved. If using personal funds (meaning money that appears on documents in your name) for any part of support the student must have the personal funds for all years of study. For example, a doctoral student who states that he or she will use $10,000 of personal funds for support would have to have $10,000 x 6 ($60,000) in order to be issued an I-20 or DS-2019. Personal funds can’t be earned, the student either has the funds or doesn’t.

Can my I-20 or DS-2019 be sent by express mail?
Yes. We recommend that you have your I-20 / DS-2019 mailed by express mail. Regular mail overseas takes 4- 6 weeks. To request express mail service you need to go to the following website: We have discounted express mail rates negotiated for UC students with DHL and FedEx, but you must use the eshipglobal service. Do not go through the DHL or FedEx websites directly. You will need your UC student ID number, mailing address, email address, phone number and a credit card (Visa, Mastercard or Discover cards only) to set up a user account. Our office will be notified once you have requested a shipment. If you experience any difficulty in registering and processing a shipment, please use the “Help” link in the site for step by step instructions. If you have additional questions about how to use this service, please email

Will UC International Services tell me when my I-20 or DS-2019 was issued?
We will send an email to all students (if email is available) when your I-20 / DS-2019 is mailed. We will not search for your file upon request and tell you when your I-20 / DS-2019 was sent or why it hasn’t been sent. When it is mailed, you will be notified.

I want to bring my spouse and children to the U.S. with me. What do I need to do?
You need to show an additional $4,000 per year for a spouse and $2,000 for each child. This is in addition to what you need to show to meet your own living and educational expenses. We will also need to know the name, date of birth, city and country of birth and country of citizenship for each dependent.

Must the Affidavit of Sponsorship be notarized?
Yes. Any Affidavit of Sponsorship made by a sponsor must have a notary seal affixed to the sponsors signature or the form will not be accepted. A notary seal is an official stamp certifying that the person signing the form is the sponsor. A notary seal can be obtained in any country, although the formal name may not be a notary. Lawyers, bankers, police officers and other government officials typically have the authority to make such certifications. In some countries (especially China) such officials may not stamp or seal UC International Services’ Affidavit of Sponsorship Form because it is written in English. It is acceptable in such instances to send a form appropriate from your home country with the appropriate seals instead of UC International Services Affidavit of Sponsorship.

Can I have a friend pick-up my I-20 or DS-2019 and mail it to me?
Yes. You may designate anyone you want to pick up your I-20 or DS-2019. But you must indicate to us in writing who that person is, and how to contact them. That person must bring a hard copy of an email or other document authorizing them to take your documents from our office.

Can UC International Services tell me if I have been awarded a scholarship or assistantship or grant me an extension to the deadline to accept my offer of admission?
No. Individual departments grant financial aid, not UC International Services. You must contact your admitting department directly about financial awards or exceptions to deadlines.