As the world enters the era of digital technology and the internet continues to shrink the world, countries are starting to realize that they need to work together. To solve big, overarching issues such as climate change, world hunger, and cancer, the brightest minds from all around the world need to work together.
That is why USCIS and other immigration agencies around the world set up exchange programs such as the J-1 visas. These immigration options are for individuals who work in education, such as professors, teachers, specialists, au pairs, and even camp counselors.
Many people reading this may think of an exchange program as only for the highest-esteemed researchers and scientists making ground-breaking discoveries, but that is not the case. USCIS admits countless cases of au pairs and humble camp counselors.
Au pairs and camp counselors are ordinary people, often hoping to live in America to learn a new culture and lifestyle. These au pairs are typically young adults who take care of a family’s children and housework in exchange for a place to stay and living wage.
In essence, the lesson here is that almost anyone can apply as a J-1 exchange visa under certain categories. Many young adults find great fulfilment in lesser-known roles such as au pairs. They experience the joys of raising a family while learning and experiencing life in America.
If you are interested in applying through the J-1 visa program, legal counsel is highly advised. Because consular officers are reviewing applications for key points, a legal team can help highlight and eloquently explain the individual’s contributions and skills for the community.
After deciding whether the J-1 Visa program is right for you, there are still many other rules to consider.
Some J-1 applicants are admitted for the sole purpose of work. Even if the applicant is admitted for work, these individuals are bound by the original rules of the exchange program. These applicants are often professors or teachers of some area where there expertise is considered a national interest. If one is unsure, it is highly advised the he or she checks with legal counsel or the sponsoring agency.
In addition to providing a visa for a qualified J-1 applicant, USCIS will also offer visas to the J-1 family. These immediate family members are entitled to a J-2 classification when they are immigrating to the United States.
In regard to their employment opportunities, the family of J-1 applicants (J-2) are authorized to obtain work permits. Even though family members are allowed to supplement the family income with the wages, USCIS does not allow these J-2 beneficiaries to be the main source of income. In other words, the J-1 applicant cannot become dependent on his or her family’s wages.
The J-1 visa exchange program is a big step for the world. As USCIS offers these unique pathways to U.S. citizenships, the idea of living in the United States becomes more accessible. Additionally, by allowing teachers, researchers, and even ordinary people come to the United States, important ideas and perspectives are being exchanged.
Ultimately, the J-1 visa program is a great option for many individuals with the right skills and application. If you are considering the J-1 option, seeking the right immigration lawyer is your next step.
This is an immigration legal blog. It is not intended to be used as legal advice.
For further information please contact the law offices of attorney Ramona Kennedy.
Ms. Ramona Kennedy received her Jurisprudence Doctorate in America and is a licensed attorney in California (USA). Ramona Kennedy is a member of American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA).
She is licensed to practice in the United States Supreme Court, US Immigration Courts, California Federal Courts of Southern & Central District & All California Courts. Ramona Kennedy is fluent in English and Farsi (reading & writing).
Phones: 13106230080 & 19496770063
Telegram & WhatsApp: 19496770063
Los Angeles (Westwood) Location
10880 Wilshire Blvd, Suite 1101 Los Angeles CA 90024
Orange County Locations:
-7700 Irvine Center Dr. Suite 800, Irvine, CA 92618
-5000 Birch St, Suite 3000 Newport Beach CA 92660