Current Events Information

Learn how Student Legal Services is helping Ohio State students throughout COVID-19, the recent protests, and other current events.
UPDATED June 23, 2020

Student Legal Services Office 

Student Legal Services remains available to assist Ohio State students by phone.  However, to ensure the safety of Student Legal Services staff, our staff is working remotely until further notice.  

To schedule an appointment for services, Ohio State students should go online.

Phone Appointments

As of March 10, 2020, the University suspended face-to-face instruction through the end of Spring Semester.  

To ensure the safety of our clients and staff, Student Legal Services will offer appointments for legal services by phone through that time.

As SLS staff is working remotely, the best way to schedule an appointment is online.  If you do not feel comfortable scheduling an appointment online, you may call our office (614) 247-5853 and leave a message.  A SLS staff member will call you when available to schedule your appointment.  Please note that calls from our office will come from a blocked, or private, number.

Skype Appointments for Students Outside the United States

If you are a student currently out of the country, you may have difficulty conducting a phone appointment.  We can offer students out of the country an appointment by Skype.  When you schedule an appointment through the online system, please enter your US phone number because you cannot enter international phone numbers. Then, in the description of your issue section, please indicate that you are requesting a Skype appointment.  You will be sent detailed instructions before your appointment about how to contact your attorney via Skype.

Together As Buckeyes Emergency Grants

On April 21, 2020, Ohio State announced it was launching the Together as Buckeyes emergency grants program.  This program will assist students having difficulty with living expenses or facing other unexpected financial challenges related to disruption of campus operations due to the pandemic.  

To apply for a grant, complete the one-page Emergency Request form and provide supporting documentation.  The Office of Student Financial Aid is prepared to response quickly to applications after determining eligibility based on each student's circumstances and guidance from the U.S. Department of Education. 

Rights and Resources for Students During Protests

Ohio State students who attend, organize, or report on the recent protests have rights that the law protects and resources that help uphold those rights. Eligible Ohio State students who have questions about their rights, or who believe that their rights have been violated, should schedule an appointment with Student Legal Services at studentlegal.osu.edu

Learn more about your rights and resources during protests in Student Legal Services Protest Guide

Off-Campus Housing

2nd Year Exemption: Ohio State announced that it will temporarily expand the housing exemption criteria for returning 2nd year students for the upcoming academic year.  Watch the Off-Campus Housing presentation hosted by SLS and Off-Campus and Commuter Student Services. 

Lease Reviews: Remember to schedule a lease review with Student Legal Services before signing a new lease.  

Immigration / International Students

Presidential Proclamation (June 22, 2020)

On June 22, 2020, President Trump issued a Presidential Proclamation, expanding his earlier Proclamation from April 22, 2020, which suspended the issuance of immigrant visas (“green cards”) to new permanent residents for 60 days. The new Proclamation extends that suspension until December 31, 2020. It also suspends the entry of nonimmigrants who hold an H-1B visa, an H-2B visa, an L visa, some types of J visas, and any dependents of these visa holders until the end of the year.

This Proclamation does not apply to anyone who is currently in the United States, or who has already been issued a visa. It does not apply to J visa holders who seek to come to the U.S. as students or scholars. There are several other exceptions.

Eligible Ohio State students with questions about this Proclamation should schedule a phone appointment to speak to a SLS attorney.

Executive Order (May 29, 2020)

On May 29, 2020, President Trump issued a proclamation that authorizes the revocation of F and J nonimmigrant visas for certain Chinese graduate students and researchers. Although the proclamation applies mainly to such students who are outside the U.S., whom it prohibits from entering the country, it also allows the Department of State to revoke the F and J visas of those students who are already here. The proclamation is effective from June 1, 2020 until terminated by the President.

The proclamation is limited to Chinese graduate students and researchers with F or J visas who are or have been affiliated with an entity that supports the People’s Republic of China’s (PRC) “military-civil fusion strategy.” The proclamation defines “military-civil fusion strategy” as “actions by or at the behest of the PRC to acquire and divert foreign technologies, specifically critical and emerging technologies, to incorporate into and advance the PRC’s military capabilities.” The proclamation applies to any Chinese graduate student or researcher who, either now or in the past, studies at, conducts research for, or receives funding from any such entity.

The proclamation does not apply to:

  • Undergraduate students;
  • The spouses of United States citizens or lawful permanent residents;
  • Any member of the United States Armed Forces or his/her spouse or child;
  • Anyone whose stay advances the United States’ national interest or law enforcement objectives;
  • Applicants for asylum or similar protection; or
  • Representatives at or experts for the United Nations, or anyone the United States is obligated to permit to enter under international agreements.

The proclamation authorizes—but does not require—the Department of State to revoke the F and J visas of these Chinese graduate students and researchers who are already in the U.S. If a person’s visa is revoked, they are not required to leave the U.S. immediately, but they may be subject to deportation.

Any eligible Ohio State student who has questions about this proclamation should schedule an appointment with Student Legal Services.

Executive Order (April 22, 2020)

On April 22, 2020, the Administration issued a "Proclamation Suspending Entry of Immigrants Who Present Risk to the U.S. Labor Market During the Economic Recovery Following the COVID-19 Outbreak."   The Order only applies to people who are currently outside of the U.S. The Order does not affect nonimmigrant visas, even if the person is currently outside the U.S.  

Eligible Ohio State students with questions about the Order, or other immigration or naturalization matters, should schedule a phone appointment to speak to a SLS attorney.

Court System 

The Franklin County courts, including Municipal Court and Court of Common Pleas, are now open.  

If you are currently represented by Student Legal Services and have questions about your case or court date, please email studentlegal@osu.edu

If you are not currently represented by our office and have received a citation or have an upcoming court date, please schedule an appointment online

Employment

If you become unemployed due to circumstances related to COVID-19, you may be eligible for unemployment benefits.  For more information, visit Ohio Department of Job and Family Services

Ohio Means Jobs and Human Service Chamber of Franklin County have job boards for those seeking employment opportunities.  

Additional Resources 

Office of Student Life: The Office of Student Life has compiled a list of resources and frequently asked questions.  Visit both for up-to-date information from the University about resources available to students and for answers to your most frequently asked questions.  

Ohio State Emergency Fund: Emergency Fund provides financial assistance to students who may otherwise be at risk of dropping out of college due to an unexpected financial emergency. If you, or a student you know, are experiencing an unplanned expense, the Student Emergency Fund may be an option.  Student Life Student Advocacy Center is accepting applications and may be able to award up to $1,000 to eligible students.

Ohio Department of Public Health: Economic Support for Ohioans.

Columbus Legal Aid: Columbus Legal Aid's legal updates and community resources in response to COVID-19.

Domestic Violence Victims: Victims can reach the City Attorney’s Domestic Violence & Stalking Unit by sending a text message to 614-653-8075 and providing domestic violence advocates with their name, a safe time to communicate, and an email or phone number where they can be reached. For their protection, victims are encouraged to delete their own message after it is sent. The City Attorney’s domestic violence advocates will contact the victim at the designated time to discuss safety planning for them and their family. In addition to City Attorney Klein’s Office, the LSS CHOICES for Victims of Domestic Violence hotline is available 24/7 at 614-224-4663. If a victim is in immediate danger, they should call or text 911.

Carry out and delivery: Columbus Monthly’s list of local restaurants, bars and breweries switching to delivery/carryout only.

Cloth Masks: You can purchase cloth masks from local vendors.  

Managing Anxiety and Stress: Mental Health tips provided by Counseling and Consultation Center.