Reports of Ice Conducting Inspections for STEM OPT Employment

Practice Areas

By: Angelita Chavez-Halaka, Armando Escobedo, Gladys Gervacio

Summary

The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) recently announced reports of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers performing site visits where STEM OPT students work.

Why does ICE Perform Site Visits?

ICE conducts site visits to ensure compliance with the STEM OPT program requirements and attestations made in the students’ Training Plans (Form I-983).

What to Expect from a Site Visit?

  • ICE will typically provide a two-day email notice to the STEM OPT manager
  • The site visit is expected to be unannounced if based on a complaint
  • ICE will review the following:
    • Whether the employer meets STEM OPT regulations
    • How the salary of STEM OPT student is determined
    • Training plan and structure of supervision of the STEM OPT student
    • Supervision of the STEM OPT student working at a third party location

What to DO?

  • Employers and STEM OPT students should review and fully understand the contents of the Training Plan
  • Update the Training Plan if there are any changes made to the training program
  • Create a plan for administrative staff and security officers to follow when receiving an ICE officer
  • Request the ICE officer for his business card
  • Have a designated staff accompany the ICE officer at all times during inspection

Stay Updated

Contact us at info@chugh.com for help on maintaining compliance with STEM OPT regulations. We also encourage you to share our newsletter with contacts who those who might benefit from this information.