dhs court rule stem opt

Can DHS Totally Ignore the Federal Court Ruling on STEM OPT Extension?

Raghuram Sukumar OPT 13 Comments

Every international student in USA is waiting to hear from DHS. What will they do about STEM OPT Extension Rule cancellation.

How will they respond? Will DHS use this opportunity to make the STEM OPT to 6 years?

I think they have four options to fix this STEM OPT Court Ruling. Watch this video to learn about the 4 possible options for DHS

Options for DHS on STEM OPT Extension Rule


There’s so many unanswered questions. But, can DHS choose to ignore the Federal Court Rule?

That will be a Crazy Twist to this Ruling.

One Immigration Attorney thinks it’s possible. And they (DHS) infact could ignore the court Rule on STEM OPT Extension.

Watch the following video from Immigration Attorney Rajiv Khanna


Interesting view point right?

Until we hear from DHS or ICE or USCIS, we have to wait and see. I getting so many emails from concerned readers with travel plans to graduation plans. And Prospective students are debating if studying in USA would be a attractive proposition if this Rule is Revoked.

As one students says, “12 months OPT is not enough to  payback the loans half of the student loan”.

White House Petition requires about 30,000 more signatures to get an official reply on this STEM OPT Rule.  Make sure you sign the petitions and share it with your friends to sign the petition as well.

But, I think as for F1 Visa students are concerned,  message to DHS is simple.

[Tweet "We are highly skilled. We contribute to America’s Growth and Economy. #DHS #FixSTEMOPTRule”]

DHS can ignore or do a notice and comment rule making or appeal. As long as it’s taken care, F1 Visa students will be happy.

What Can you Do Next:

Subscribe to the STEM OPT Extension Rule Latest News and Updates page

Check out the Infographics – How STEM OPT Extension Court Rule Affects F1 Students.


  1. If option 4 has come into the picture saying DHS has ignored the ruling, then does OPT extension get cancelled?

  2. Option 1: DHS could put a new rule in place.

    What would that rule do? The safest thing would be for DHS to do regulations that unwind (phase out gracefully) OPT extensions. It would be extremely difficult for DHS to put through regulations that do the same thing after failing to give notice and comment the first time.

    A phase out would give DHS 30 more days than trying to keep OPT extensions alive, A major rule (and an OPT extension is a major rule) must be published 60 days before going into effect, giving DHS until Dec. 14. A rule for an OPT phase out would only require 30 days–Jan. 13.

    Option 2: DHS could appeal.

    I don’t know what they would appeal. Clearly, they did not give notice and comment and it is hard to see how they could possibly justify that under the circumstances (See Lee Beck’s admin law page). The failure to give notice and comment when it is required is a serious defect in rule making. It is so serious that the judge probably should not have given DHS a six month grace period.

    Such an appeal would be to the D.C. Circuit, not the Supreme Court.

    According to Law 360, the PLAINTIFFS already have appealed in spite of prevailing. This suggests they are trying to block DHS from doing a new regulation that restores OPT extensions.

    We do not know yet what they are appealing but I can see a couple of good grounds for the plaintiff to prevail on this in the opinion.

    Option 3: Appeal and do a new regulation.
    See above.

    Option 4: Ignore the Court
    Any lawyer telling you that DHS can ignore the the court is engaging in malpractice.

    1. Author

      @Steve, in the video above, Attorney says that has happened in the past.

      1. The lawyer in the video is highly confused. He appears to be referring to the actions not being bound by courts outside their geographic jurisdiction. DHS is located in Washington D.C. The Court in question is the District of Columbia District.

  3. What do you mean by DHS can ignore the court decision.

    Does it mean that 17 opt extension will be avaialable for f1 student?

  4. Hi Raghuram, extremely thankful for all your guidance and help! Can you please share the link where I can sign the petition and share it across?

  5. Ram

    This will be really a surprising twist. But DHS/USCIS should come out with a decision to end this confusion among the STEM students and employers. Infact people are getting confused on the situation with more speculations.


  6. Hi,

    This will be really a surprising twist. But DHS/USCIS should come out with a decision to end this confusion among the STEM students and employers.


  7. That’s will be Crazy Twist to this Ruling. : Wrong ‘s

    One Immigration Attorney things it’s possible. : Things = Thinks

  8. I think the DHS will either try to implement an extension of 6 years or they will ignore the court decision.

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