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Dear all, I have a J2 visa, My husband has waived his 2 year rule.

Cambridge, MA |

I want to apply to PHD program in USA. and I cannot come back to my country.
I need to know whether I would able to change my J2 visa to F1?

If I can, (after receiving I-20 form) should I leave U.S.A and request
a F1 visa from third country , and then come back to U.S.A again?
Does it take a long time and it is a difficult process?
Thank you so much in advance.

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Attorney answers 3

Best Answer

Your husband’s waiver also waives your two-year foreign residence requirement (assuming you were a J-2 derivative from your husband’s J-1 and you were married at the time of the waiver application and grant). Under INA § 248(a)(3), you cannot change status (except to A or G), unless and until you obtain a waiver. (This also assumes that your husband did not come to the United States for graduate medical education). Now that it appears that you have a waiver, you should be able to change your status in the United States. You may want to consult with a lawyer experienced in J matters to properly nail down your options.

Brian Schmitt
Hake & Schmitt
Attorneys at Law
P.O. Box 540 (419 Main St.), New Windsor, Maryland 21776
Phone: 410-635-3337

Required Disclaimer: This information is generalized and should not be relied upon as legal advice; and this communication does not create an attorney-client relationship.


You don't state why you cannot return to your country. Usually, obtaining a F-1 visa in your own country is your best alternative.

Please click the link at the very bottom for additional information.

Carl Shusterman, Esq.
Former INS Trial Attorney (1976-82)
Board Certified Immigration Attorney (1986 - Present)
Schedule a Legal Consultation - Telephonic, Skype or In-Person
600 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 1550
Los Angeles, CA 90017
(213) 394-4554 x0
Web: (English) (Spanish)

(213) 394-4554 x0 Mr. Shusterman is a former INS Trial Attorney (1976-82) with over 35 years of immigration experience. His response to your question is general in nature, as not all the facts are known to him. You should retain an attorney experienced in immigration law to review all the facts in your case in order to receive advice specific to your case. Mr. Shusterman's statement above does not create an attorney/client relationship.


I agree with my colleague.

J Charles Ferrari Eng & Nishimura 213.622.2255 The statement above is general in nature and does not constitute legal advice, as not all the facts are known. You should retain an attorney to review all the facts specific to your case in order to receive advise specific to your case. The statement above does not create an attorney/client relationship. Answers on Avvo can only be general ones, as specific answers would require knowledge of all the facts. As such, they may or may not apply to the question.

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