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Maintaining Your J-1 Status

The International Services and Engagement Office (ISEO) is here to provide you with immigration advising for maintaining your legal status, as well as providing programs and advising that will help you not only adjust to living in the U.S. but to engage in rewarding experiences to remember for a lifetime. If you have any questions, feel free to schedule an appointment with one of our ISEO scholar advisors. We hope that your visit will prove rewarding, both professionally and personally.

Maintaining one’s immigration status is the main responsibility of the nonimmigrant – you! In general, a nonimmigrant must maintain the following documents:

  • Valid passport
  • Electronic or paper Form I-94
  • Entry stamp, if issued at entry
  • All DS-2019's issued to you

General Responsibilities for Maintaining J-1 Status:

Change of Address

All international Faculty and Scholars must notify ISEO of address changes within 10 days of the information changing, per immigration regulations

Step 1: Notify ISEO of your change in address or contact information via iServices.

Step 2: If you have not done so already, contact your department to ensure your contact information is updated on the UC San Diego systems (e.g. UC Path)

Step 3: J-1 Faculty and Scholars: You have met your regulatory requirement. ISEO will update your J-1 SEVIS record.

212e Waivers

Certain J-1 Exchange Visitors are required to spend two years in the aggregate in their home residence country after their J program (time spent in other countries does NOT count). If you are subject to this requirement, you cannot apply for H, L, or permanent residence status unless you either return to your home country for two years or obtain a waiver of the requirement.

You also cannot change to another non-immigrant status while in the United States, except to A status (diplomatic or government official) or G status (international organization). You may apply for a different nonimmigrant visa (except H or L) at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate outside the U.S.

Contact your ISEO advisor before applying for the waiver to discuss timing, as once you receive the waiver you cannot extend your current J program.

Bars & Restrictions

J-1 Exchange Visitors can also be subject to a 12-or 24-month bar restricting repeat participation in J program.

Note: the 24-month bar is different than the 212e two year home residency requirement that some scholars may be subject to. 

Employment & Job Changes

Please Note:

All changes in site of activity, funding amounts or sources, and/or significant changes in job duties, must be reported to the International Services and Engagement Office. Your department administrator will need to submit an amendment request via iServices on your behalf, so please speak to your departmental contact first.

You are authorized to stay in the U.S. to pursue full-time the program activity outlined on your DS-2019 at the site of activity(ies) requested by your sponsoring department (sites of activity do not display on the DS-2019). You may not work anywhere else without prior approval from the International Services and Engagement Office (ISEO). If you stop pursuing your program activity, your status ends as well.

Job Changes:
If there are proposed changes in your program activity, your funding sources, your site of activity, your department or institution, or your job title, you must report them to ISEO; an amended DS-2019 may be required.

Health Insurance

Visitors in J-1 and J-2 statuses are required to maintain health insurance coverage that meets U.S. Department of State requirements for their program duration as a condition of their participation in the J-1 Exchange Visitor Program. 

Occasional Lectures & Consultations

Scholars may receive payment for occasional lectures or short-term consultations at another institution or company, provided that specific requirements are met and the "J-1 Scholar Occasional Lecture or Consultation" e-form is submitted and approved in the iServices portal.


A J-1 may enroll in classes as long as they are incidental to your full-time program activity and do not delay your program completion.

Taxes and Your Glacier/UCPath Information

J-1s scholars are not required to pay FICA ("payroll") taxes for their first two calendar years (any portion thereof), and may receive tax treaty benefits exempting them from income tax. All J-1 scholars are required to file tax forms on a yearly basis, however, regardless of tax liability status. If you are extending or changing your nonimmigrant status you must update your Glacier and UCPath information so the institution can properly apply tax treaty benefits and withholding from your paycheck. 

Adding J-2 Dependent

Typically, J-2 DS2019's are issued at the same time as a J-1 request.

If your family will be joining you after your J-1 DS-2019 has already been issued. You may submit a request for ISEO to issue the J-2 DS-2019 via iServices.


Please read through ISEO's Travel Webpage for information regarding documents required for travel and additional travel considerations.  

Travel Outside the U.S. for More Than 30 Days
leave of absence notification is required if your travel is for business and over 30 days or, your travel is personal and over 60 days.