Below are detailed instructions on how to fill out the I-765 if you are applying for Optional Practical Training (OPT). The only items highlighted on this form are those that students commonly have questions on or are confused about. Please review each item carefully to ensure your I-765 is filled out correctly. Each item discussed is highlighted in the image as to where it appears on the actual I-765 Form. Download the form using Chrome or Firefox and complete it in Adobe Acrobat on your digital device, print out, and sign in black ink only.
Check the box “Permission to accept employment.” If you lost your EAD and are applying for a new card, select "replacement." If you are applying for STEM OPT, select "renewal of my permission to accept employment."
Enter your family name first. Enter your first name second. Include your middle name if you have one.
Write "N/A" if you haven't used another name.
Enter your street address. This must be a US address and it should be valid three months into the future. If you believe you will change addresses within the next three months we recommend you instead list the address of a trusted friend or family member. If you choose to enter your friend’s or family member’s address, you must also include a “care of” name. This is indicated by writing “c/o” and then the name of your friend/family member before the street address.
if you have ever received a Social Security card previously you must check "Yes", if not, check "No".
Only answer this question if you have a Social Security Number, and checked "Yes" for item 9a.
Check "Yes" for both 10 and 11 if:
Check "No" for both 10 and 11 if you have a Social Security card already.
if "No" to number 10, skip to question number 14.
Only answer these questions if you do not have a Social Security card and checked "Yes" for items 10 and 11. By answering these questions you would be applying for a Social Security card with your Social Security number printed on it. Your SSN will be issued, and you will receive an SSN card within 2-4 weeks of your OPT application approval. You will not need to submit a separate application for an SSN to the SSA.
Enter your I-94 number.
Select “Yes” if you have previously applied for OPT, or ever submitted the I-765 for work authorization to the US Citizenship and Immigration Services. Select “No” if you have only ever worked on campus or been authorized for CPT, or if you have not previously worked.
If you selected “yes”, enter the USCIS office that handled your previous employment authorization application. For most of you this will be the Vermont Service Center (receipt number would start with EAC). Other service center codes are:
Enter the date(s) you were approved/denied for employment authorization.
Find the service center information on your previous EAD cards. The service center is indicated from the three digit alpha code at the beginning of the number. Date/s should be the start date of the previous employment authorization period, if multiple previous work authorization put most recent authorization and attach documentation showing all other work authorization periods from USCIS, if multiple previous employment periods, for results enter in most recent results and also enter see attached documentation.
Enter the last date you entered the U.S. For most of you this should be the date stamped in your passport.
Indicate city and state of your last arrival or entry into the US. This should be indicated by the three digit code stamped on your passport. For example, if you entered JFK, the stamp in your passport should indicate “NYC”. If you entered through Newark, the stamp on your passport should indicate “NEW”.
Your status of last entry should be "F-1 Student."
Your current status should be F-1 Student.
Write "N/A" in the blank fields if you are not applying for STEM OPT. If you are applying for the 24 month STEM OPT Extension write the following:
Write "N/A" in blank fields.
Leave checkbox blank as it does not apply to OPT applications.
Be sure to sign the form in black ink inside the box. Make sure only your signature is in the box and fits entirely within it, as the government will scan your signature for your approval document.
Signature of person preparing form, leave this blank unless someone else has completed your I-765 for you. You should not sign this section if you have completed it yourself.