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cuentochino

Change of status from B2 to J1 from within USA

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Hi!

I'm a Spanish citizen currently in New York. My boyfriend is American so I came here on a B2 (tourist) visa to visit. My visa is valid for 6 months but I would like to stay for longer.

I graduated from university last June so I'm elegible for an internship J1 visa. Now, I've been trying to find a paid internship and it's not easy (I've been offered a couple of unpaid internships but I really need the money). BUT, assuming (hoping?) that I'll manage to find one, is it possible to get a J1 visa from here without having to go back to Spain and apply from there?

I know there's the option of changing the visa status from the USCIS website, which requires the DS-2019 (the document issued by the sponsoring agency, I would need it anyway if I applied from Spain) and an i-539 form.

Has anyone tried to change their visa status this way?

I've contacted a few J1 sponsors (BTW they're EXPENSIVE!) and they all tell me I need to apply from the Madrid embassy, but nobody tells my why a change of status is not an option....

Thanks!!!!

PS. If I really need to, I guess I could apply from Spain (although it's a lot of money wasted in the flights...). In that case, is it likely that they approve my J1 visa when they see that I've been in the USA for a few months already?

FYI: My B2 visa was approved because I said I wanted to travel around the USA. However I've basically stayed in NY all this time. I'm renting an apartment with the savings I have, Basically doing a bit of tourism and trying to find an internship. I know it sounds suspicious, but I'm not working or getting money from any sources (don't want to ruin my chances of getting a new visa).

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Most folk on a B-2 marry the American Boyfriend and adjust status that way,

instead of chasing a J1.

So, if'n that's an option for you, I suggest you chase that, instead.


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Most folk on a B-2 marry the American Boyfriend and adjust status that way,

instead of chasing a J1.

So, if'n that's an option for you, I suggest you chase that, instead.

Thanks! But I don't think it's really an option... I mean, we've only been together a few months.

My plan is to find an internship (or job, but I know that's even more difficult) so I can stay at least until the summer, or up to 12 months. I might not even want to stay here for longer than that (we might move somewhere else). I'm not trying to find a way into permanent residency, I just want to stay for a little longer.

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You can't just find any internship, paid or otherwise, and get a J visa -- the internship has to be an approved sponsor or you must go through a sponsoring agency -- it's not as easy as you seem to think it is.

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