Maintaining J Non-Immigrant Class
Required Activities for Maintaining Status
Insurance Requirement: All J-1 and J-2 immigration classification holders are required to carry health insurance that meets specifications outlined in the J regulations in order to maintain their immigration status. If you have questions concerning this requirement, please see our J-Exchange Visitor Health Insurance Requirement page.
J-1 Students must pursue the course of study required by their Duke programs or schools and must make satisfactory progress toward a specific educational objective.
J-1 Scholars are authorized only for the funding associated with the activities described in the addendum to the cover letter accompanying the DS-2019. Item #3 of the DS-2019 indicates the ending date of the authorized activities. No outside funding is permitted unless the DVS specifically authorizes it in advance and in writing.
J-1 Student Interns may engange in employment, research and study activities previously reviewed and approved before issuance of the DS-2019 by the J sponsor. In addition, all tasks assigned must be necessary for the completion of the student internship program and not serve to fill a labor need. The activities should consist of "work-based learning" rather than "ordinary employment or unskilled labor" and should expose the participant to American techniques, methodologies, and technology, expand upon the partcipant's existing knowledge and skills, and not duplicate the student intern's prior experience. Student interns should not be engaged in any activities involving unskilled child care or elder care; aviation; clinical positions or other work that involves patient care or contact; or any activity that would bring Duke or the U.S. Government into notoriety or disrepute. A student intern may participate in an internship with or without wages or other compensation. To be employed, however, the intern needs the approval of both the DVS advisor and the student's home institution's dean or academic advisor. Student interns must maintain contact with their Duke sponsors during their entire stay in the U.S.
J-2 dependent spouse or child is in status only while the J-1 is in status. The J-2 dependents cannot remain in the U.S. if the J-1 principal leaves the U.S. for an extended period of time. For more information, please see our 30-day Absence From the United States page.
J-1 students and scholars are admitted either until the ending date on the DS-2019 or until the program ends, whichever comes first. They are permitted to remain in the U.S. for an additional 30-day “grace period” to allow time to pack and to travel inside the U.S. No work is permitted during this 30-day grace period. For example, if the DS-2019 ends on 31 July, then the authorized stay will end 30 days later on 30 (not 31) August. The grace period permits additional time inside the U.S. If you leave the U.S. during the grace period, then you cannot return in J-1 status.
J-1 Students may stay for the time needed to complete the educational program they are pursuing, but must keep the ending date on the DS-2019 valid into the future at all times.
J-1 Professors and Researcher Scholars have a 5-year time limit on their stays in this immigration class. DOS does not permit extensions beyond 5 years.
J-1 Short-term Scholars have a 6-month time limit on their stays in this immigration class. DOS does not permit extensions beyond 6 months.
J-1 Specialists have a 12-month time limit on their stays in this immigration class. DOS does not permit extensions beyond 12 months.
J-1 Student Interns have 12 month time limit on their stay. DOS does not permit extension beyond 12 months.
J-1 Alien Physicians sponsored by the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG) have a maximum 7-year time limit or the time required to complete the training program, whichever is shorter. Only under exceptional and unusual circumstances will the EVP grant an additional extension.
For information on J-1 Duke Sponsored student extension requests, please review our F-1 and J-1 Student Extension of Stay webpage.
For information on J-1 Duke Sponsored Scholar extension requests. please review our Duke Sponsored J-1 Scholar Extension of Stay webpage.
J-2 dependent extensions are generally filed at the same time as the J-1 extension.
J-1 students under Duke’s J-1 sponsorship, and whose DS-2019 forms were issued by Duke, are permitted to work on campus only if the employment is part of a scholarship, fellowship, etc. connected to the course of study. No other work is permitted unless specifically authorized in writing by the DVS in advance. Students sponsored by other agencies (refer to Item #2 on the DS-2019 to identify your sponsor), must obtain permission in writing from the J-1 sponsors that issued the DS-2019 prior to working on campus. On-campus employment is limited to 20 hours per week while school is in session and full-time during holidays and school vacations. J-1 students can obtain authorization to work off campus for the purpose of academic training.
J-1 scholars are authorized only for the employment associated with the activities described in the addendum to the cover letter accompanying the DS-2019. Item #3 of the DS-2019 indicates the ending date of the authorized activities. No outside employment is permitted unless the DVS specifically authorizes it in advance and in writing.
J-2 dependents may apply to DHS for work authorization by filing Form I-765 with the appropriate fee and supporting documents. If DHS grants work authorization, then any kind of work is permitted until the employment termination date indicated on the I-766, Employment Authorization card (EAD), provided the J-1 principal remains in status. If the J-1 violates status, changes from J-1 to some other non-immigrant class, or leaves the J program altogether, the work authorization for the J-2 dependent terminates. For more information, please see our J-2 Work Authorization Procedures page.
A J-2 dependent who works without DHS authorization is out of status even though the J-1 still may be in status.
J-1 students and scholars can extend their research, study and teaching activities by contacting the DVS and following the specific procedures for their J-1 category and kind of activity. J extensions require the support of the relevant department. The maximum extension of stay varies based upon the previous study and research categories.
J-2 dependents may extend their work authorizations by submitting an application, Form I-765, to DHS with the appropriate fee and supporting documentation. One of the supporting documents is evidence of extension of stay for the J-1 principal, so the J-2 must wait for the J-1 extension in order to file for work authorization extension.