J-1 to J-2

J-1 to J-2 – Change of Nonimmigrant Status

Contact the Study Abroad office as soon as you know you must obtain J-2 status in order to discuss your options. Generally J-1 and J-2 Exchange Visitors who are subject to the two-year home-country residence requirement are prohibited from changing status within the U.S., except to A or G status. It may be necessary to return home and apply for the new visa type there.

Instructions

1. Obtain a DS-2019 from the J-1’s program sponsor.
If this is ECSU, contact Dr. Indira Petoskey, at Petoskey@easternct.edu
2. Decide which option to use: “Travel and Reentry” or “Change Status in the U.S.”
3. Prepare the required documents and follow next steps for obtaining J-2 status (details below).

Option 1: Travel and Reentry

Review the international students’ visa page.

Option 2: Change of Status in the U.S.

Reminder: J-1 Exchange Visitors who are subject to the two-year home-country residence requirement are generally prohibited from changing status within the U.S., except to A or G status. It may be necessary to use the “Travel and Reentry” option to obtain J-2 status.
If eligible, submit your application to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) one of two ways:
a. Apply online through the USCIS ELIS (USCIS Electronic Immigration System) or
b. Mail a paper application to the USCIS.
If you apply online, you must scan and upload copies of the following documents to ELIS. You will complete Form I-539 information online and pay the application fee online.
If you choose the paper application option, mail the following documents to the USCIS facility in your area. (We encourage applying online, it saves paper and is more convenient)

  •  Form I-539 Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status
  •  $290 fee (check or money order payable to “U.S. Department of Homeland Security”)
  •  Original I-94 card or photocopy of admission stamp and paper printout of I-94 record
  •  Photocopy of the visa page and identification page in your passport
  •  Photocopy of your DS-2019 (front and back)
  •  Photocopies of your spouse’s DS-2019 and I-94 card (front and back)
  •  Photocopy of signed DS-2019 listing you as the dependent of the J-1
  •  Photocopy of proof of family relationship to the J-1 (for example, marriage certificate)
  •  Evidence of financial support
  •  Detailed letter requesting and explaining the need to change status

Note

J-1 and J-2 Exchange Visitors who are subject to the two-year home-country residence requirement are prohibited from changing status within the U.S., except to A or G status.