Ask Sophie: What are my options if a company withdraws my OPT position?

Here’s another edition from “Ask Sophie”, the advice column that answers immigration-related questions about working at technology companies.

“Your questions are essential to spreading knowledge that empowers people around the world to push beyond boundaries and chase their dreams,” said Sophie Alcorn, a Silicon Valley immigration lawyer. “Whether you’re in people management, a founder, or looking for a job in Silicon Valley, I’ll be happy to answer your questions in my next column.”

MinRegion+ members get access to weekly “Ask Sophie” columns; use promo code ALCORN to buy a one or two year subscription at 50% off.

Dear Readers: I must first share my gratitude. To everyone who voted for me for the Disrupt Audience Choice Award, I’m speaking live from the stage during #Disrupt2023! I always enjoy meeting you spontaneously, but now we can schedule it. Buy your tickets and get your ESTA or B-1/B-2 – I can’t wait to meet you!

Dear Sophie,

I am an international student graduating this month, but the company I was supposed to work for at OPT has withdrawn my job offer.

What are my options?

– Grappling Grad

Dear Grappling,

First of all, congratulations on your upcoming graduation. I know things may be daunting for you right now, but don’t forget to celebrate your achievement and this important milestone.

Many immigrants often find themselves in situations where they have to act quickly. You are not alone and there are resources to support you.

There may be some silver linings here for you. As you explore your options, keep in mind that the most innovative and insightful ideas often come during tough times.

Notify your DNB

If you haven’t already done so, you should notify your university’s Designated School Official (DSO) of your situation and ensure that your information is updated. Federal regulations require you to notify your DSO of any changes in employment or personal information within 10 days. DSOs are required to update the information in the federal Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) system within 21 days.

An important detail to keep in mind is that F-1 students on OPT (Optional Practical Training) are only allowed to be unemployed for 90 days after graduation. Some details of your next steps may differ depending on whether you have already applied for and received your OPT work permit.

Now let’s look at some options!

A composite image of immigration attorney Sophie Alcorn in front of a background with a MinRegion logo.

Image Credits: Joanna Bunjak

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