Your Rights in the U.S.

Your Rights In The U.S.

Regardless of your immigration status, you have guaranteed rights while in the U.S. The Office of International Students and Programs strives to help you understand your rights, provide you with information resources for a broad range of topics, and help you protect yourself from violations of your rights.

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Your Rights In The U.S.

Franklin University is committed to being an inclusive community free from all forms of discrimination and harassment in all university interactions as required by local, state, and federal laws and regulations. Franklin’s Department of Safety & Security Services works hard to help make Franklin a safe and secure place to learn and offers many informational resources.  Franklin has, also, developed a variety of policies, regulations, codes and standards to support a safe and supportive learning environment for students, faculty, staff, visitors and guests.

You have basic rights under the U.S. Constitution and state, local, and civil rights laws. The U.S. government has provided information in multiple languages about your rights and protections.  Federal resources are, also, available about your rights protecting you from internet crimes and consumer abuses. You may have additional support available from your embassy or consulate. The State of Ohio website includes information about consumer rights and for new residents. The City of Columbus offers information about discrimination and about ensuring needs of diverse populations are being met. The ACLU’s Know Your Rights website provides useful guidance that addresses what rights you have when you are stopped, questioned, arrested, or searched by federal, state or local law enforcement officers. This information is relevant for citizens and non-citizens with additional information for non-citizens and students. Another section includes your rights at ports of entry to the U.S. and guidance if you have been detained by Border Patrol.

If you believe that your rights have been violated or have been a victim of a crime, please notify our Department of Safety & Security Services at +1(614)947-6902.

These resources are not a substitute for legal advice. This information is meant only to serve as an introduction to help international students understand the basics about their rights.

If you are in a nonimmigrant status, such as F-1 international student status, whether you are considered a resident or not depends on the purpose of the residency and other factors.


U.S. tax residency rules use a various factors, including a substantial presence test, to determine if nonimmigrants are considered nonresident aliens for tax purposes. Details, including the substantial presence test, are available through at the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) website.


Under Ohio elections law, your residence is (1) the location that you consider to be a permanent, not a temporary, residence and (2) the place where your habitation is fixed and where, whenever you are absent, you intend to return. Nonimmigrants are not considered to have permanent residence for voting purposes; therefore, you are not eligible to vote in state or federal elections. 

Selective Service

Selective Service registration is how the U.S. government keeps a list of names of men from which to draw in case of a national emergency requiring rapid expansion of Armed Forces. Nonimmigrant men living in the United States on a valid visa are not required to register for as long as you remain on a valid visa up until you turn 26. If you receive a letter requesting that you register for Selective Service, please send supporting documentation to show you are exempt.