J-1 Home-Country Physical Requirement

Some participants in the J-l exchange program may be subject to a two year home residency requirement (212-E). If you are subject to this requirement and you want to change your status or become a permanent resident of the United States , you must comply with the requirement or obtain a waiver prior to acquiring your new status. To satisfy the requirement, you must return to your home country for two years.

Not all J-l visitors are subject to the two- year home residency requirement. However, if you fall under the following three categories, you are subject to this requirement:

1. Your participation in the program was funded in whole or part, directly or indirectly, by a U.S. government agency or an agency of the government of your home country.

2. The skills developed as an exchange visitor are on the skills list of your country.
NOTE: If your skill was listed after you came to the U.S. as a J-l exchange visitor, you may be exempt from the requirement.

3. You are a foreign medical graduate.

Under certain circumstances you may be eligible to waive the two year home physical presence requirement. The four types of waivers are as follows:

  • NO OBJECTION WAIVER
  • EXCEPTIONAL HARDSHIP WAIVER
  • PERSECUTION WAIVER
  • INTERESTED GOVERNMENT AGENCY WAIVER

You may also consult with an attorney who is knowledgeable on the subject of J-l waivers.