DIFFERENT TYPES OF J1 VISAS
It is not just for Residencies that the J1 Visa is granted.
Besides the clinical Residency or Clinical fellowship J1-visa sponsored by the ECFMG, here are the other categories of J1 visas :
- Research Scholar (3 years maximum)
- Professor (3 years maximum),
- Specialist (1 year maximum),
- Short-term Scholar (6 months maximum),
- Student (necessary time to complete degree, must be enrolled full-time in a degree program)
Note that an IMG holding a clinical J1 is called an "Alien Physician" - yeah, almost sounds as if you came from Mars ;-)
Now, in the context of IMGs, this is important to know since NOT ALL J1-Visas have the 2-year Home Residency Requirement ! So, some of you come for a PhD on a J1 OR come for an Elective / Observership / Externship on Visiting Student Program - but don't need really need to go back to your own country for two years before converting to a work visa.
Here are the things that WILL MAKE J1 VISA obligated for the 2-year Home Residency Requirement:
- If you sponsored by ECFMG - like GME residency / fellowship and ECFMG Sponsored Research scholars
- If you are funded by your Home country government for the exchange student program
- If you receive direct funding from the U.S. government
- If you have skills that are on U.S. government's needed skills list, or
- If you are a J-2 dependent of a J-1 who is subject to any of the above!
The rest of the J1 types can continue to stay in the US and get themselves H1b visa Sponsoring jobs.
Do not confuse the 2-year bar from the 2-year Home-Country Residence requirement. The 2-year Bar that some research J1s have imply that the person must spend 2 years on other status (which can include H1b) before getting back to a Research Scientist J1 position again . While the 2-Year Home-country Requirement Rule states that the person must spend two years back home or get a waiver, before changing to a work-visa
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