Required Funding Documentation

Berkeley International Office issues I-20 and DS-2019 Certificates of Eligibility to more than 5,000 students and scholars every year. We are required by law to verify that each person has sufficient funds to cover the period of their stay in the United States. In most cases, the documentation we require will also be required at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate when applying for the F-1 or J-1 visa (keep a copy for that purpose).

To obtain your I-20 or DS-2019 in a timely manner, follow the guidelines below when submitting your request for a new or extension document:

Acceptable Proof of Funds

UC Berkeley Awards (scholarships, GSI/GSR, grants etc):

  • UC Berkeley sponsoring departments should complete the Guarantee of Financial Support - Academic Departments form.
    • Signature criteria: Handwritten or hand-drawn signatures using cursor or touch screen, Adobe signatures, or Docusign signatures
  • If you cannot obtain this form, please provide an official letter. The letter must be:
    • printed on official UC Berkeley letterhead 
    • signed by the sponsoring department
    • issued in the last 6 months
    • state the amount, length, and type of funding
  • Note: summer funding is not included as part of the minimum required funding

Personal funds:

  • Bank statements in your name showing balance of account (see below for criteria**)

Private sponsors: including parents (must include both of the following):

  • The sponsor's bank or other financial statements (see below for criteria**
  • A Guarantee of Financial Support - Private Sponsors form completed and signed by your sponsor
    • Signature criteria: Handwritten or hand-drawn signatures using cursor or touch screen, Adobe signatures, or Docusign signatures
    • As an alternative to the Guarantee of Financial Support form, you may submit a letter(s) specifying the relationship between you and the sponsor(s), the amount of support (does not exceed account’s available ending balance), and the length of support
    • Certificate of relationship is not required

Other institutional support/award letters:

  • Letter from an employer or another institution on official business letterhead, including athe student’s full name, amount, and length of support, and an official signature
    • Signature criteria: Handwritten or hand-drawn signatures using cursor or touch screen, Adobe signatures, or Docusign signatures

    • Letter must be dated within 6 months of submission

  • Salary statements are not accepted

Loan certificates/letters:

  • Must indicate the student's full name, the amount and the disbursement period of approved loan (the disbursement period should overlap with the student’s program dates).
  • Must provide proof of acceptance of the loan offer (e.g. a signature of the applicant agreeing to the terms and conditions or a payment receipt of an origination fee).
  • Conditional loan approvals may be accepted only if the only condition is the receipt of your I-20 or DS-2019.
  • Loan applications are not accepted as proof of funding

**Bank/Financial Statement Criteria:

  • Should be a single page document showing the criteria below. DO NOT submit long statements that include transaction history
  • Showing bank/financial statements from multiple accounts is acceptable
  • Should have a stamp, signature, or on a letterhead issued by the financial institution
  • Indicate the financial institution's name
  • Indicate the account holder's name
  • Clearly show the account’s available balance
  • Be dated within 6 months of submission (older statements will be rejected)
  • Be translated into English (especially names), unofficial translations are accepted
  • Clearly show the type of currency
  • Be from statements that show liquid assets that can be immediately converted to cash

IMPORTANT: The following types of funding are NOT accepted:

  • Documents older than 6 months from the date of submission
  • Bank statements with a maturity date that is after the program start date
  • Income or salary statements (except UC Berkeley GSI/GSR positions)
  • Funds that are not immediately accessible
  • Transactional receipt
  • Assets that are not in liquidated form (house, car, etc.)
  • Life insurance policy statements
  • Pension funds, unless it is clearly stated that funds can be withdrawn at any time
  • Tax return forms or documents

Submitting/Resubmitting Documents

Make sure all supporting documents are included with your request before you submit them to our office. Missing or separate documents will only slow down the process. Your Certificate of Eligibility (I-20/DS-2019) documents cannot be processed until all proof of funding documents are received.

For J-1 Scholars Only

Scholars are required to document at least $2,000 per month, plus $600/month for a spouse, and $400/month per child. For more detailed information on J Scholar Financial Requirements, please see J Scholar Financial Requirements.