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Question on J-1

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Hi there! I am applying for a J-2 visa as a dependent with my spouse who has a J-1 and had a few questions. After the J1/J2 expires, what are the regulations around the two year Home country physical presence requirement? Is there flexibility in regards to where you live (as long as its outside the US) or must it be the J1’s last country of residency? Additionally, what are the chances of getting a waiver for this policy? Thanks so much in advance for all of your help!

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1. It is called "home" residency requirement because you have to reside in your home country. The only flexibilities I know of:

 

case A: You are living in country X at the time of application of the J1. Country X is not your country of origin but you have living in country X. You can go back to country X instead of your country of origin to serve the 2 years.

 

case B: After the J1 you left and lived in other places for a long time (I'm taking 10 years). Probably you won't be asked for evidence of 2 years served. Some people on VJ have mentioned that.

 

case C: After the J1 you do a PhD under an F1. You go for holidays to your country and add up 2 years in short spans of time.

 

2. You can possibly get a waiver of the reason of the requirement is based on the "skills list". But it depends on whether the embassy of your country gives out "no objection letters". Some countries do not give them out and you need them for the waiver. 

 

If you have a J2 you also have the 2 year residency requirement so you cannot get an H1B or green card, even if you divorce the J1 holder.

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