J-1 Exchange Visitors

J-1 Exchange Visitors

Eligibility Requirements
J-1 sponsorship is offered to international scholars coming primarily to conduct research at City of Hope in a temporary training or visiting capacity.  J-1 Exchange Visitor participants sponsored by City of Hope are authorized to work only at City of Hope.
Individuals interested in working for another institution after City of Hope needs to transfer their J-1 sponsorship and/or obtain other work authorization prior to commencing employment with another institution or employer.
While there are several J-1 sub-categories, City of Hope sponsors only two types: Research Scholar and Short-Term Scholar
J-1 exchange visitors must maintain residence abroad and has no intention to immigrate to the U.S.
Learn more about J-1 Exchange Visitors on the U.S. Department of State J-1 Visa Exchange Visitor Program.
J-1 Mandatory Insurance
All J-1 visa holders and any J-2 dependents (spouses and minor child/ren - children under the age of 21) are required to carry the minimum J-1medical insurance coverage at all times.
Learn more about J-1 eligibility and fees

J-1 Sponsorship for Physicians
City of Hope cannot sponsor J-1 for physicians. The U.S. Department of State has designated the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG) as the visa sponsor for all J-1 exchange visitor physicians who participate in clinical training programs.
Maximum Period of Stay
Maximum period of J-1 Research Scholar is five years. Extensions beyond five years are very difficult to obtain and require Department of State approval. Please contact International Students and Scholars Office to discuss other visa type options beyond five years.

All J-1 Research Scholar is subject to a 24-month bar on “repeat participation” in J-1 Research Scholar category upon completion of current J-1 program.  The 24-month bar is different from the 2-year home residency requirement, which discussed below.

Maximum period for a J-1 Short-Term Scholar is 6 months. No program extension will be considered and no change of J-1 category will be considered.
Two-year Home Residency Requirement
Certain J-1 exchange visitors may be subject to a two-year home residency requirement. This requirement mandates that the exchange visitors to return to and spend two years in their country of last residence at the conclusion of their program/stay in the U.S. These individuals will not be able to obtain H, L, or permanent resident status until the requirement is either satisfied or waived.

The home residency requirement is imposed when:
  • The exchange visitor's program was financed, in whole or in part, by the home country government or by the U.S. government;
  • At the time of admission and acquisition of J-1 status, the exchange visitor's skills were determined to be in short supply in the home country, or
  • The exchange visitor has engaged in graduate medical education or training.
Waiver or Two-year Home Residency Requirement
The U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security together may waive the two-year home residency requirement on one of the following grounds:
  1. No Objection Statement;
  2. Exceptional Hardship;
  3. Persecution; and
  4. Interested Government Agency.
For more information, go to the U.S. Department of State website.
Obtaining a waiver for the two-year home residency requirements requires proper timing and is a time-consuming process that can take one year or more to complete.
** Note**
Applying for the waiver will affect both J-1 and J-2 status.  Thus, it is important to consult with the International Students and Scholar Office prior to initiating the waiver application process (this includes before completing the online application).
Spouses and Children of J-1 Exchange Visitors
Spouses and/or children under the age of 21 who wish to accompany the J-1 visa holder (or join him/her at a later date) in the U.S. for the duration of his or her stay require J-2 visas. The application procedure is the same as that for the J-1 visa applicant. If spouses and/or children under the age of 21 accompany the J-1 applicant, or join them at a later date, the spouse and/or children will need their own Form DS-2019. Please contact the International Students and Scholar Office for assistance.
The spouse and/or children of an exchange visitor in the U.S. may work under J-2 status. However, before the J-2 visa holder can work, he or she must make an application to USCIS and be approved for permission to work. A Form I-765 Application for Employment Authorization Document Card (EAD) must be filed with the local USCIS office that serves the area where he or she lives.
How to Apply for a J-1 Visa
City of Hope International Students and Scholar Office will prepares a Form DS-2019 (Certificate of Eligibility for Exchange Visitor (J-1) Status) and mails to exchange visitor.  Exchange visitor uses the Form DS-2019 to apply for a J-1 visa stamp in his or her home country.
For more information, see J-1 Handbook.