NIF Frequently Asked Questions

Am I required to complete the Nonimmigrant Form (NIF)?

All nonimmigrant students must complete the NIF as part of their admissions acceptance. This includes students who intend to hold F-1 or J-1 status, as well as other nonimmigrant classifications such as E-2, J-2, L-2, and H-4.

If you have already completed the NIF, you can check the Processing Status of your I-20/DS-2019 Certificate of Eligibility request at any time.

If I don't need an F-1 or J-1 visa, should I complete the NIF?

Yes, Berkeley International Office (BIO) is here to support all international students regardless of status, so please complete the NIF and indicate your current visa status. Completing the NIF will also complete the Task in your CalCentral. If you need to change your status to F or J in the future, BIO will have a record of your attendance at Berkeley, which will assist with the process. If you are an undocumented or AB540 student, you can indicate "other" as your current and expected visa status on the NIF. If you submit the NIF, no other action will be required and the information will not be shared outside BIO.

I've been admitted/readmitted. However, I'm not seeing the NIF task on my Cal Central. How can I get access to the NIF task?

It can take up to 2 weeks from the time you've submitted your Statement of Intent to Register or for the Office of Registrar to process your readmission to see the NIF task on your Cal Central. If it has been 2 weeks and you're still not seeing the NIF task, please contact for assistance.

What does Berkeley International Office require to issue an I-20 or DS-2019?

A complete online NIF. In the NIF, you will be asked to upload the following:

  • A copy of your passport biographical page (showing your full name, photo, and birth date)
  • A copy of your dependent(s)' passport biographical page (showing their full name, photo, and birthdate), if applicable
  • Proof of sufficient financial support as indicated on your NIF  
  • Proof of full-time Summer Session enrollment (only if you are a Fall admit starting in summer requesting an earlier start date on your I-20 or DS-2019).

What documents are accepted as proof of financial support?

For a complete list of acceptable financial documents, see Required Funding Documentation.

How much funding will I need to demonstrate in order to complete my NIF?

Students will be asked to demonstrate funding for all tuition and fees as well as living expenses for themself and any dependent(s) in F-2/J-2 status. F-1 students will need to upload proof of a minimum of 1 year of funding. J-1 students will need to upload proof of enough funding to cover their entire length of study

See International Student Expenses for an estimate of expenses. The amount of required funding is displayed in the Academic Program section your NIF and determined by your program and length of study (for J-1). Please note that the amount displayed on your NIF is an estimate only and may not exactly match your cost of study. Please always refer to the Office of the Registrar or your department for exact costs.

How long will it take to issue my I-20 or DS-2019?

It takes about 15 business days (approximately 3 weeks) from the time BIO receives a complete NIF to issue and email your I-20 or DS-2019. If there are any missing items from your NIF, this process may be delayed. Expedited Processing (10 business days) is available for a $100 fee payable via credit/debit card.

Can you send my documents through express mail?

BIO has daily Express Mail service from our office. You have the option of a variety of courriers, including Fedex and UPS. This requires payment from you. If you would like to have your documents sent this way, please see Express Mail Payment Instructions.

How can I make corrections to my NIF?

If you need to make corrections after submitting your NIF, you may send an email to with the requested changes. Be sure to include your name and Student ID number.

What should I do If I am a fall-admitted student starting early in the summer?

If you have decided to start your degree program early by enrolling in the UC Berkeley Summer Session program, you must enroll in full-time units (unless you are transferring your SEVIS record from another institution) and request an I-20 or DS-2019 to cover both summer and fall programs. Please follow the steps in the online NIF and Starting in Summer.