J-1 Visa for Exchange Visitors

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>   J-1 Overview
>   J-1 Eligibility and Criteria
>   Qualifications for J-1 Visa
>   J-1 Consular Application
>   J-1 Consular Processing
>   J-1 Quota and Time Limitations
>   Employment Under J-1 Visa
>   From J-1 to Green Card
>   J-1 Denials

Commonly referred to as the exchange visitor program, the J-1 classification provides for certain exchange visitors to participate in an approved program of the Department of State for the purpose of teaching, instructing or lecturing, studying, observing, conducting research, consulting, demonstrating special skills, receiving training, or receiving graduate medical education or training.

Atty. Galstyan, an experienced immigration attorney, prepares the entire package necessary for you to take to your J-1 visa interview. During our initial consultation, we will first get all the facts, determine what the most effective way to present your J-1 visa case to the consular officer would be and as such prepare a case for you to take to your interview. We also guide you through the entire J1 student visa process involved with the DS-2019 form that is necessary for the J-1 visa application. Please contact us for your free, no obligation consultation with Mr. Galstyan.


The participating programs of the J-1 visa are appointed by the U.S. Department of State to oversee the exchange visitor program. As such, the non-immigrant J-1s that enter the U.S. are essentially entering under the sponsorship of those approved programs. The idea behind the J-1 non immigrant visa program was to promote the exchange of knowledge, skill and expertise in the field of education, sciences and arts.

Examples of exchange visitors include, but are not limited to:

  • Professors or scholars
  • Research assistants
  • Students
  • Trainees
  • Teachers
  • Specialists
  • Nannies/Au pairs
  • Camp counselors

To apply as an exchange visitor under J-1 classification, the applicant must present a SEVIS generated DS–2019 issued by a Department of State appointed sponsor to the consular officer prior to the grant of the visa. The U.S. embassy or a consular post has the ability to verify the validity of the DS- 2019 record electronically through the SEVIS system in order to process the J-1 visa application. In addition to other fees associated with the visa application, the J-1 applicant must also pay the I-901 SEVIS fees, unless their program falls under a fee exemption.

Family of J-1 Holder

Your spouse and unmarried children under 21 years of age, regardless of nationality, are entitled to J-2 classification. Your spouse and children are entitled to work authorization; however, their income may not be used to support you.

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