The Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) unit of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has launched on-site inspections of the STEM Optional Practical Training (OPT) employment of certain F-1 trainees. The purpose of the inspections is to review employer compliance with STEM OPT regulations and with individual training plans for specific foreign nationals.
Though ICE has had the authority to make site visits since regulations governing the STEM OPT program were revised in May 2016, the agency has not begun to conduct inspections until now.
Companies that employ F-1 students pursuant to STEM OPT should plan in advance for a potential DHS site visit.
If your company is contacted by ICE, please reach out to our firm as soon as possible to discuss preparation for the visit.