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Personal Sale of Artwork Advisory


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Please be aware that when you are an international student, selling your artwork in the United States may be considered unauthorized employment, if you do not have specific authorization to do so. Such activity could potentially jeopardize your visa and immigration status now or in the future.

There is not a clear answer of when the sale of items would be considered unauthorized employment. However, repeated or extensive sale of artwork, or creation of art on commission or for the purpose of being sold, are more likely to be considered unauthorized employment.

As this is a “gray area,” OIA recommends to be on the safest side that you avoid such activity, when it is not clear whether an activity constitutes unauthorized employment.

The sale of your artwork may be permissible when you are on Optional Practical Training (OPT), provided the work is directly related to your field of study and you report it in your SEVP Portal.