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Exchange Visitor Program Workers (J-1 Exchange)

People from all over the world want to come to the United States to travel, to work, and to take advantage of all that this great country has to offer. One option is to participate in the J-1 Visa Visitor Exchange Program, which according to the  HYPERLINK ""U.S. State Department provides “countless opportunities for international candidates looking to travel and gain experience in the United States.”

Because the J-1 Visa program provides opportunities to all different types of people within many different programs, determining whether a J-1 Visa is an option for you can be difficult. Dorsett Immigration Law can help.

Our immigration firm knows all the different ways that a J-1 Visa can give visitors the opportunity to spend time in the United States. We can help you to determine if you fall within one of the categories that a J-1 Visa covers. We can start you on the path toward obtaining one.

What is the J-1 Exchange Visitor Program?

The J-1 classification allows foreign nationals to visit the United States as exchange visitors, in order to receive training or participate in internships. The J-1 Visa is a nonimmigrant visa, so those who participate in the program will not move to the U.S. indefinitely but will instead stay for a specific duration to take part in teaching, researching, working, or studying. All J-1 programs should be at least three weeks in duration. A J-1 program may be valid for up to 18 months for trainees and up to 12 months for interns. 

The J-1 program sponsor must approve the proposed training or internship program as a career development opportunity for the foreign national. J-1 sponsors should not approve programs if:

  • It involves unskilled or casual labor posts
  • It requires or involves child care or elder care
  • It involves work related to patient care or patient contact
  • It involves more than 20% clerical work
  • It is in the field of aviation

Additionally, the J-1 program should not be used simply to staff U.S. employers, and therefore J-1 programs are not permitted to contract with Staffing/Employment Agencies.

If you are a J-1 program sponsor or foreign national interested in developing your career through a foreign exchange internship or training, you need to talk with an experienced immigration lawyer. Dorsett Immigration Law can explain what specific programs may be right for you and can guide you through the process of proving eligibility for a J-1 Visa.

Requirements for the J-1 Exchange Visitor Program

Requirements for participation in the J-1 Exchange Visitor Program can be very extensive for a program sponsor. The sponsor must be designated as a J-1 sponsor by the Department of State. The J-1 sponsor may contract with a "Host Organization" to conduct the training or internship on behalf of the sponsor, but the sponsor is ultimately held more accountable.

A J-1 sponsor is responsible for screening the host organization, screening the trainee or intern, monitoring that the training or internship meets all requirements such as being full-time, and ensuring the host organization notifies the sponsor of any changes or lack of compliance by the organization of any law.

Because the responsibilities of a sponsor and host organization can be complicated and daunting, it is best to consult with an immigration lawyer about the requirements of the specific program to be sponsored. Dorsett Immigration Law can put our legal experience to work for you. 

How an Immigration Lawyer Can Help with the J-1 Exchange

If you are eager to come to the U.S. to develop your career through a training program or internship, the J-1 Exchange may be the perfect answer for you. Give Dorsett Immigration Law a call today to find out if you are eligible to sponsor or participate in the J-1 Exchange and for assistance in pursuing the opportunities this program provides to live and work in the United States.