Understanding Your Legal Requirements

This section contains information about maintaining your F-1 and J-1 immigration status. While Penn State’s international student advisers can assist you in understanding the benefits, requirements, and limitations of your status, it is ultimately your responsibility to maintain your immigration status. Please read the information in this section carefully.

Addresses and Other Contact Information

All students in F-1 and J-1 status, and their dependents, are required to report address information. ISSA is required by law to report this information to SEVIS. You are responsible to report and update both your home country address and your local U.S. address.  


  • Home Address (outside of the U.S.) -- required 

    • An international home address, outside of the United States 
    • Update any address change in Account Management within 10 days 
  • Local U.S. Address -- required 

    • A local address, where you live and sleep in the U.S. 
    • Update any address change in Account Management within 10 days 
    • Please verify the correct format for your local address at usps.com 
  • Telephone – two required 

    • A home country phone number (outside of the U.S.) 
    • A U.S. mobile phone number  
    • Please be sure to set up voicemail on your mobile phone. ISSA will only call you regarding important issues. 
    • Update any telephone number change in Account Management 
  • Emergency Contact 

    • Please provide information for an emergency contact. This is the person who the University will contact if you are seriously ill or injured 
  • Work Address 

    • If you are a graduate student and have a departmental mailbox or office, use this address as your work address 


If you change your address and are working on campus, you must fill out a new W-4 form with your Penn State Employer. All off-campus employment requires authorization through ISSA. 


After graduation and while working on Optional Practical Training (OPT) or STEM Extension OPT, you are still required to report any address change. When you no longer have access to Account Management, please log into iStart and complete the OPT Update form. Please note that you may need to use the Limited Services link to access your iStart account.