Visitors in J-1 Status are responsible for learning, understanding, and complying with U.S. federal laws and regulations governing the J visa. Failure to do so will violate your legal status in the United States and will have serious consequences. Your responsibilities include the following:
Keep your passport valid at all times: You must have a valid passport in your possession. For information on renewing your passport, visit the website of your country's embassy or consulate in U.S. (See: http://www.embassy.org/embassies)
Report address changes within 10 days to the Office of Global Initiatives (OGI): According to the U.S. federal regulations all J-1 visitors are required to report a change of address directly to the OGI within 10 days of the address change. The OGI is required to provide this and other data to the federal government electronically.
Maintain a full course of study each semester (students only): U.S. Federal Regulation [8 CFR 214.2(f) (6)] requires you to pursue a full course of study each Fall and Spring semester until graduation or transfer to a new school.
Obtain PRIOR authorization from the OGI BEFORE dropping below a full course of study: There are very limited exceptions to the full-course-of-study rule. Those reasons include: academic difficulty, medical condition, or completion of study. You must obtain PRIOR authorization from the OGI. After obtaining this authorization, you may then drop the course.
Abide by U.S. Federal Employment regulations: J-1 students may not work more that 20 hours per week on campus when classes are in session [8 CFR 214.2(f)(9)]. You cannot work off-campus (including credit-bearing internships off campus) without PRIOR authorization from the OGI and the U.S. federal government. Opportunities for off-campus work are limited.
Maintain required health and accident Insurance: J-1 visitors must have health and accident insurance approved by the OGI for themselves and any J-2 dependents throughout their stay in the U.S.
Report changes in program to OGI: Visitors must notify the OGI whenever there is a change in their academic program, program dates, or level of study.
Bring Your SEVIS DS-2019 to the OGI prior to traveling outside the U.S.: Visitors should bring their DS-2019 to the OGI prior to traveling outside the U.S. to see if an updated OGI signature is required. A new form may need to be issued to you. If you will be traveling AND applying for a new visa, you will also want to request a letter of certification from the OGI, to verify that you are a full-time student or scholar.
Notify the OGI of any accompanying dependents or dependents who will join you later: OGI prepares visa documents for any dependents of J-1 visitors who will enter the U.S. on J-2 visas. The OGI is required to report biographical data on J-2 dependents to the U.S. federal government.
Ending your studies at AUM unexpectedly? Report your departure date and reason to the OGI: Periodically, visitors leave the university early or unexpectedly due to a variety of reasons, including early graduation, leave of absence, withdrawal, or termination. U.S. federal regulations require J-1 visitors to inform the OGI if they plan to leave the university before the expiration date of their DS-2019 form as well as the reason for doing so. Please come to OGI to complete a departure form.
Apply for an extension prior to the DS-2019 expiration date: Visitors must apply for an extension BEFORE their DS-2019 form expires if they intend to stay at AUM and cannot complete their program by the form expiration date. Requests for an extension may be submitted at any time up to the 30 days prior to the expiration date on the form. You will need to obtain the "Academic Advisor's Recommendation Form for Extension of Stay" and re-certify.
Obtain transfer authorization prior to leaving AUM: Students or scholars who plan to transfer to another college or university in the U.S. must inform the OGI of their final choice by completing a "SEVIS Release Form" so that the OGI can perform the "Transfer out" in SEVIS and designate the school to which you will transfer.
Depart the U.S. within the 30 day (J-1) "Grace Period": Visitors in J-1 status must depart the U.S. within the 30 days of the DS-2019 expiration date or program end date, whichever is earlier, unless they have applied for academic training or are transferring to a new J program.
Visit the Office of Global Initiatives website for the updates and changes in Immigration Regulations: While it is the the responsibility of the OGI to keep AUM international students and scholars informed about changing federal immigration regulations, it is the responsibility of the international visitors to STAY INFORMED by periodically checking in with the OGI and visiting the website.
This information is subject to change without notice. If you have any questions or concerns regarding your legal status in the U.S., it is important to schedule an appointment to speak with an advisor.