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J1 visa 2 year home presence for dual nationals.

Cleveland, OH |

Hello, I am on j1 clinician(physician) visa, and I have a dual citizenship, Syrian and Lebanese. my ministry of health statement of need is syrian, and my j1 visa is on my syrian passport also. so, can i apply for hardship waiver for Syria due to current situation, or I will be subject to the 2 year home residency requirement of my 2nd citizenship Lebanon. Thank you.

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Attorney answers 4


Logically thinking the two year requirement applicability for any J-1 visa is considered in connection to the actual J-1 visa stamp attached to any given passport (in your instance, in the Syrian passport); therefore, I think you may seek a hardship waiver for Syria as a Syrian national on merits given the drastic developments in the country. This delicate case must be discussed in person with an experienced immigration attorney for further guidance.

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I agree with attorney Ivanchenko. Make an appointment with an attorney to discuss possible immigration options.

Law Office of Mary K. Neal | || 773-681-1335 This answer is intended as public information about a legal topic. Answers posted here do not create an attorney-client relationship. For specific legal advice, please make an appointment to speak with an attorney in private.


I agree with my colleagues.

Business Immigration Attorney. For H, L, J, EB5s, PERM and EB1/2/3 Petitions. Call 800-688-7892 or visit Law Office of Anu Gupta. The advice suggested here is for general information only. It is not to be construed as legal advice. We promise to zealously represent you - but as with any legal matter, we cannot predict the approval of your case based on our past successes. Each case is different. If you are in a similar situation, we would recommend that you contact us to discuss your case.


Our firm concentrates on J-1 hardship and persecution waiver applications. We've had specific success in J-1 hardship cases from Lebanon and Syria.

If you held dual nationality prior to being admitted in J-1 visa status, you need to demonstrate exceptional hardship to the qualifying relatives in the case (U.S. or LPR spouse, and/or U.S. citizen and/or child/children) in every possible travel alternative. That means you must demonstrate exceptional hardship to the qualifying relatives in the case if you went back to Syria or Lebanon. This is true because under INA § 212(e), you can fulfill the requirement in both countries.

J-1 hardship waivers are extremely complex, especially when there is a dual nationality situation present. I recommend you consult with a lawyer that has specific experience in J-1 matters to advise you on your waiver 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.

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