How to Complete the I-20/DS-2019 Request

Getting the Correct Documents for Immigration

This page explains how to get the documents you need to apply for your visa and attend your visa interview. We will explain what documents you need to submit and how to fill them out correctly.

Remember, we cannot issue your immigration documents until after you have been admitted.

What Documents Do I Need?

In order to issue you documents for a visa, we need the following:

  1. A copy of your Admission Letter.
  2. An I-20/DS-2019 Request Form (NOTE: You can get the fillable PDF form here.)
  3. Proof of Financial Support.
  4. Scan of Passport.
  5. Copy of any current visa documents. Remember, most people will not have this unless they are already inside the U.S. This is optional if you do not have a current visa.

Where Do I Submit the Documents?

All of your documents must be uploaded to ISSS’s Secure Portal (Direct link:

Go to the link and sign in using your myBama ID and password. (for set myBama up, see OIT Page and information on Duo two-factor authentication).

If you are impacted by DUO Access Denial due to your location and are unable to access the Upload Portal, please contact

ISSS I-20/DS-2019 Issuance Document Upload Portal

Each document must be either an image, pdf, or word file less than 5 mb in size.

Use the dropdown menu to select each document type, then attach that document type by clicking “Add Files”.   You will then repeat this process for each document type.

Once you have uploaded your documents, click “Submit” to send the documents to send the documents for review.

How to Fill Out the I-20/DS-2019 Request Form

Step One – Where are you?

The first step is to determine where you are currently.

If you are currently inside (or if you have a valid existing I-20 or DS-2019) the United States, you complete the Inside Section (see the green box).

If you are outside the United States, you complete the Outside Section (see the orange box).

Where are you?

Options for those Applying for Student Visa OUTSIDE the U.S.

  1. Option One (F-1 Student Visa): Most students must apply for the F-1 student visa. Almost all of our students come on this visa.
  2. Option Two (J-1 Student Visa): J-1 Visas are meant for exchange programs and for government-sponsored programs which require use of the J-1 Visa. If you think you should use the J-1 visa, you should contact International Student and Scholar Services to make sure. You can find our contact information at

Options for Students Already INSIDE the U.S.

There are several options if you are in the United States, and it is very important to pick the correct one.

  1. Option One (SEVIS Transfer to UA): Use this option if you already have an active I-20 or DS-2019 at another school in the United States. If you choose this option, you will have an extra section to complete on the form.!!! You can learn more about the transfer process here.
  2. Option Two (Change-of-Level): Use this option if you already have an I-20 at UA and will be completing a degree and are starting a new degree. Your I-20 has to be updated and re-issued for you to start a new degree.
  3. Option Three (Reinstatement): Only use this option if you have been instructed to file for reinstatement by an advisor at International Student and Scholar Services.
  4. Option Four (Change-of-Status): Completing a change of status is an expensive and difficult process. You should not begin this process without speaking to an advisor at International Student & Scholar Services. You can find out more information about a change-of-status application here.



Step Two – Fill in Information about Yourself

The next step is to fill in the information we need to issue you an I-20 or DS-2019, including your biographical details.

Important Things to Remember:

  1. It is very important that you complete your name exactly as it is on your passport.
  2. We use the Month/Day/Year system in the U.S. Please remember to adjust your date of birth to match that format.
  3. It is possible that you may not have a U.S. address. If you do not, it is fine to leave it blank.



Step Three – Fill in Your Degree Information

Complete your degree and start date information. Remember, we must have your Campus Wide Identification (CWID) number. Without it, we may not be able to match this document to your record.

Only for J-1 Students

If you are a J-1 student, we also need your occupation or profession in your home country and the name of the company you work for.

Only for Students with Dependents

If you are planning to bring a spouse and/or children with you, you need to complete this section so that we can issue documents for them as well. If you need more than two dependents, you can add them on a separate sheet of paper.

Remember, you will need to add $5000 in additional financial support per dependent record in the financial section.

See: Student Dependent F-2/J-2 Visa.

Note: Parents and siblings do not qualify as F-2 or J-2 dependents and cannot be issued an F-2 I-20 or J-2 DS-2019.  See: Inviting Family to Visit.


Step Four – Fill in Your Financial Support Information

In order to issue you documents, we have to submit proof of your financial support to immigration. You will need to show financial support in the amount listed in Section 3 plus any extra support for dependents (see the red boxes).

Summer Start Dates: Summer tuition, fees, books, and supplies are not included in the estimated annual costs. If summer will be your first semester of study in the U.S., you must be prepared to enroll full-time in summer. Thus, undergraduate and graduate students beginning in summer will need to show additional funding for summer tuition and fees. Summer tuition rates available at:

Law School: Law school tuition is charged at a different rate than undergraduate and graduate tuition. Law school students must show an additional funding annually due to tuition differences. Tuition rates are available at:

Full details on expenses can be found on our Expenses Page.

Choosing Your Source of Funding Support

Financial support can come from a combination of three different sources.

  1. University Funds: This could be a scholarship, graduate assistantship, or graduate fellowship. Note: Your scholarship/assistantship/fellowship may not cover the full amount of your total funding requirement. If not, you will need to show additional sources of funding to cover the remainder.
  2. Personal Funds: This is money in your name in a bank account. This cannot be credit or loaned money. We need you to fill in the amount of support (USD), and provide the name of the financial instruction and the country it is in. With this type of support, we need a bank statement or letter indicating the support you have. This statement or letter must:
    • Be in English
    • Show a date that is within the last 6 months
    • Display your name
    • Display the balance available and the currency
  3. Family Sponsor Funds: This is money that your parents or other family have in their name. Remember, your family must complete a Certification of Financial Resources in Family Sponsor Funds section (Page 2, Section 3, Item 3 of I-20/DS-2019 Request Form).

    With this type of support, we need a bank statement or letter indicating the financial support your family has. This statement or letter must:

    • Be in English
    • Show a date that is within the last 6 months
    • Display your family sponsor’s name
    • Display the balance available and the currency
  4. Other Awards/ Grants/ Scholarship Support: This is funding that comes from a government-based scholarship, a scholarship from an organization, private scholarship, employer scholarship, or educational loan. We need the amount (USD), and the name of the sponsoring institution. With this type of support, we need a letter indicating the scholarship support you have . This letter must:
    • Display your name
    • Display the dates the scholarship/grant/financial guarantee is valid for
    • Display the amount of support
    • Display the name of the institution providing the funding
    • Display the contact information for the institution providing the funding


Step Five – SEVIS Transfer Info – Only for SEVIS Transfer Students

If you are transferring an immigration to us from another U.S. school, you will need to complete Section 4 with the transfer information.

Please do not have your SEVIS record transferred until you have been admitted to UA.  Once admitted, you may provide your International Student Advisor (DSO/ARO) with a copy of your admission letter and request to transfer your SEVIS record to UA.

The University of Alabama’s F-1 School Code is ATL214F01174000 and our J-1 EV Program Number is P-1-03854.

See: SEVIS Transfer Section.


Step Six – Sign Your Request Form

The last step is to sign the document, affirming all the attestations and showing that all of the statements you have made are true. This is required for us to accept the document as official.