J-1 Exchange Visitor Program

The University of Oregon's J-1 Exchange Visitor Program is intended for citizens of a foreign country who are approved to participate in a work- and/or study-based exchange for mutual intellectual and cross-cultural enrichment. 

Application   |   Host Department Responsibilities   |   Immigration   |   Maintain Status   |   Categories   |   Eligibility   |   Limitations   |   Dependents 

Application

Hosting Department Checklist

Visiting Scholar Checklist

  • Copy of biography page of passport, valid at least six months beyond your period of stay in the US 
  • Copy of biography page of passport of any dependents 
  • Current CV 
  • Proof of English Proficiency (required only for non-native English speakers)

Provide ONE of the following: 

  • Recognized English language test: 
    • English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL iBT or TOEFL iBT Home Edition) minimum score of 88 
    • International English Language Testing System (IELTS) minimum score of 7.0 
  • Bachelor’s degree or higher from an academic institution in one of the following countries: Australia, Canada (excluding Quebec), Ireland, New Zealand, or the United Kingdom. 
  • Documented interview conducted by the hosting academic department: English Language Proficiency 

Proof of funding for scholar and any dependents

  • Scholars must provide evidence they have the financial resources to support themselves for their J-1 program. Minimum financial requirements: 
    • J-1 Exchange Visitor: $1,850/month, or $22,200/year 
    • J-2 Dependents: 
      • Spouse: additional $1,550/month or $18,600/year 
      • Each J-2 Child under the age of 21 years old: additional $550/month or $6,600/year 
  • Acceptable Proof of Funding documents (e.g. contracts, scholarship award letters, bank statements, etc.) must be in English and include:
    • Scholar’s name 
    • Date 
    • Currency 
    • Amount of funding available
  • Transfer-In Form (only required if currently in J-1 status at another institution of higher education).
Notice:

Beginning July 1, 2023, J-1 exchange visitors may participate remotely no more than 40% of their J-1 program (e.g., two out of five days per week) ISSS must be notified if the visiting scholar plans to participate in a hybrid schedule.

ISSS does not charge the hosting department or visiting scholar for any J-1 Exchange Visitor Program services. Nonetheless, the hosting department may be responsible for shipping fees.

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Hosting Department Responsibilities

The hosting department is required to assist the visiting scholar with general UO onboarding and provide support throughout their program, including:

  • Obtaining UO credentials (i.e., UO ID and Duck ID)
  • Providing onboarding resources and support
  • Providing a workspace
  • Providing direct supervision of scholar’s research and/or professional activities at the UO.
  • Setting clear expectations of the program’s nature, department’s collaborative needs, and scholar’s duties
  • Contacting ischolar@uoregon.edu immediately if the scholar
    • Leaves their program early
    • Makes any changes to terms of their program (e.g. responsibilities, length of program, etc.)

Please note that the visiting scholar must actively pursue his/her J-1 objectives on an in-person, full-time capacity and the hosting department is responsible for ensuring that the visiting scholar’s J-1 program is advancing at a successful progression.

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Immigration Steps

  • Hosting department submits complete J-1 Scholar application to ischolar@uoregon.edu
  • ISSS issues form DS-2019 to visiting scholar
  • Scholar uses form DS-2019 to complete the form DS-160 and pay the associated fee to schedule a J-1 visa appointment at a US embassy or consulate
  • Scholar uses form DS-2019 to pay the I-901 SEVIS fee prior to J-1 visa interview
  • Scholar obtains J-1 visa and uses it to enter the US up to 30 prior to program start date listed on the form DS-2019

Additional Resources

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Arrival to the UO: Maintaining Status

SEVIS Activation

Per federal regulations, the visiting scholar must complete an arrival orientation with ISSS within 30 days of his/her arrival. Please inform ISSS of any international travel plans. The DS-2019 must be endorsed prior to international travel. If transferring to another institution of higher education in the US, please notify ISSS and coordinate with transferring university in completing the UO Transfer-Out Form. Please contact ISSS at (541)346-3206 or ischolar@uoregon.edu to schedule an appointment for the mandatory orientation.

Health Insurance

J-1 visiting scholars and accompanying J-2 dependents are required to have insurance for medical emergencies, evacuation, and repatriation of remains for the entire duration of the J program. J-1 exchange visitors and any accompanying J-2 dependent(s) may be subject to the requirements of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Minimum health insurance coverage must meet the following:

  • Medical benefits of at least $100,000 per accident or illness
  • Repatriation of remains in the amount of $25,000
  • Expenses associated with the medical evacuation of the exchange visitor to his/her home country in the amount of $50,000
  • A deductible not to exceed $500 per accident or illness
Notice:

A willful failure to comply with health insurance requirements is a violation of the Exchange Visitor Program regulations.

Address Reporting Requirements

The visiting scholar is responsible for notifying ISSS of any US address change within 10 calendar days.

Other Requirements and Responsibilities:

  • Maintain a valid DS-2019 at all times.
  • Maintain a valid passport at all times.
  • Maintain a valid I-94 Travel Record marked D/S (duration of status).
  • Engage in appropriate activities outlined by DS-2019.
  • Maintain health insurance, which meets the minimum requirements, for the entire duration of the J program.
  • Obtain proper authorization from ISSS:
    • Extension of J program
    • Out-of-country authorization if outside the US for a substantial period of time
    • All employment activities must be part of the exchange visitor’s program. Occasional lectures or short-term consultations outside the exchange visitor’s program must be authorized in writing and recorded in SEVIS.

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Sponsorship Categories

Sponsorship via the UO J-1 Exchange Visitor Program includes the following categories.

J-1 Exchange Visitor Category

Minimum Duration of Participation

Maximum Duration of Participation

Purpose

Professor

3 weeks

5 years

Teach, lecture, observe, or consult; may conduct research.

Research Scholar

3 weeks

5 years

Conduct research, observe, or consult in connection with a research project. May also teach or lecture where authorized.

Short-Term Scholar

N/A

6 months

Lecture, observe, consult, train, or demonstrate special skills.

Specialist

3 weeks

1 year

Observe, consult, or demonstrate special knowledge or skills.

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Eligibility

The exchange visitor must be eligible for, and accepted into, the program they will participate in via the UO’s J-1 Exchange Visitor Program. Participation in the program must be suitable to the exchange visitor's background, needs, and experience. At a minimum, the exchange visitor must:

Eligibility to participate in the UO's J-1 Exchange Visitor Program requires that the exchange visitor be offered one of the following by the hosting UO department:

  • Postdoctoral classification work contract
  • Pro Tempore classification work contract
  • Visiting classification work contract
  • Courtesy appointment
Note:

J-1 sponsorship is solely for temporary work and/or research-based exchanges. Career, tenure, tenure-track, or other permanent employment positions are not eligible for J-1 sponsorship.

Contact Human Resources for information regarding contract and courtesy appointment requests.

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Bars/Limitations for J-1/J-2 Exchange Visitors

12-Month Bar

The exchange visitor is not eligible to participate in the professor/research scholar J-1 category if he/she has held any J nonimmigrant status within the 12-month period immediately preceding the start of his/her UO exchange program. The 12-Month Bar also applies to J-2 dependents. The following 3 exceptions exist:

  • Exchange visitor transfers his/her J-1 program to the UO without any break or gap in their program.
  • Exchange visitor’s previous J-1/J-2 physical presence in the US was less than 6 months.
  • Exchange Visitor will pursue a J-1 program at the UO for less than 6 months and under the ‘Short-Term Scholar’ J category.

24-Month Bar

The exchange visitor that participates in the UO J-1 Exchange Visitor Program as a Professor or Research Scholar becomes subject to a 24-month bar on “repeat participation” in these categories after completing his/her program. The 24-month bar on repeat participation does not require the individual to reside in his or her home country as does the INA 212(e) 2-year home country physical presence requirement.

INA 212(e) 2-Year Home Country Physical Presence Requirement

The exchange visitor may be subject to the 212(e) home country physical presence requirement if he/she receives funding for their J-1 program from his/her home country government or the US government, or whose skills are on his/her home country’s Skill List. If subject, the exchange visitor must fulfill the 212(e) home country physical presence requirement, or receive official waiver of the 212(e) home country physical presence requirement, before being eligible for certain immigration benefits. For more information, click here.

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J-2 Dependents

The spouse and unmarried minor children (under 21 years of age) of the J-1 exchange visitor are eligible to accompany the J-1 exchange visitor to the US in J-2 status.

Employment

A J-2 spouse or child can apply for an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) in order to be employed in the United States. The J-2 may begin employment only after receiving the EAD from USCIS. J-2 employment authorization expires with the expiration of the EAD.

Note:

J-2 spouse, or dependent employment is not for the purpose of financially supporting the J-1 exchange visitor. J-2 employment may only be used to support the family's customary recreational and cultural activities and related travel, among other things. 

To request J-2 employment authorization, submit the following:

  • Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization 
  • Form I-765 fee
  • Letter from the J-2 stating why the employment is desired and how the income derived from employment will not be used for the financial support of the J-1 exchange visitor.
  • 2 passport-style photos taken no more than 30 days before filing the form
  • Copy of J-2’s passport ID page
  • Copies of current J-1 and J-2 DS-2019s
  • Copy J-2 visa sticker
  • Copies of J-1 and J-2 I-94 Travel Records
  • Evidence of the J-2's relationship to the J-1 exchange visitor (e.g., marriage certificate for J-2 spouse or birth certificate for J-2 child)
  • For extension/renewal of employment authorization, include all the above items and copies of J-2’s previous EAD card(s).

Social Security Number (SSN) for a J-2 dependent

A J-2 dependent may obtain a Social Security Number (SSN) only if in possession of an unexpired Employment Authorization Document (EAD). J-2 dependents without work authorization approved by USCIS are not eligible to work and are therefore ineligible for an SSN.

Taxes and I-9 Compliance

Unlike J-1 exchange visitors, J-2 dependents are subject to Social Security taxes. They are also subject to federal income taxes, and where applicable, state income taxes. See IRS Publication 519, U.S. Tax Guide for Aliens.

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