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You have your I-94 card, your DS-2019 form and your J1 visa, and each of them shows different dates that affect your program in the USA. Finally, while onboard a plane flying to the USA, you receive the I94 form, which has two parts.
That’s the date written in your I-94 card by the US immigration officer who processes you upon arrival.
As you can see, the commonly shared idea that the visa shows how long you can stay is wrong.
Since your flight home probably leaves from the USA, you need to be able to re-enter the USA if you make a trip outside the country. If the immigration officer at the port of entry is unsure if you are re-entering in order to continue your program, he may not allow you to re-enter the USA even though your visa is still valid!
This is why your DS-2019 form has several fields for confirmation that you are in good standing and are returning to continue your program.
So if you are planning a trip outside the USA towards the end of your program, call your program sponsor, let’s say two weeks prior to your trip, and arrange for your DS-2019 to be certified for your re-entry. Hi Laura, yes this is actually absolutely perfect, it suggests to the immigration officer that you want to start your program on time.
If my J1 visa start date is the 11th of June, can I enter the USA on the 31st May and visit friends first? Hi Asneda, your visa dates have nothing in common with your DS dates and serve different purpose. Hello Swaps, you need to raise this with your program sponsor, the company that issued your DS2019. Hi i got a job in usa as a classic car mechanic i am from Denmark and have a mechanic licence can i get work visa? Hello, I work in USA like au pair and I extended from USA for another year and I already got new DS form for another year (but not new visa to my passport which means I will not have a chance to leave USA for a year)..
Hello Katerina, you need to contact your program sponsor and ask them to certify on your DS2019 that you are in good standing and returning to continue your program. Hi Sheena, like everybody else, you need to consult these things with your program sponsor. I have a multiple entry j1 visa that expires on 5 jan 2013, if I have valid DS 2019 can I re-enter US on 4 jan 2013? I have 5years J1 visa work and travel, and my ds2010 expire in sep 3, 2012 and my visa in may 2017. Hello I came to us with J1 i stayed illegal for 1 year but i been out of the usa for 3 years can i still go back ? Hi, I read your article and it was pretty helpful but the thing is that on my I 94 the date shown is the day that I entered US (25th of May) while my visa expiration is 14sept. It usually shows the date you entered and either the date until which you are admitted, i.e.
I am planning to work in a usa summer camp and the program says to apply for the j1 program I was planning to travel in the USA for 6-7 weeks before hand but reading about the j1 program it says you can only enter the country 30 days before the starting date.
I’m applying to enter the USA on a h2b visa, can I enter the USA before the start date on my visa and travel? Peter, you need to ask whoever handled your H2B visa petition or your employer’s Labor Certification. I am not with your program but you have alot of great information here that applies to me so i was wondering if it would be ok to ask a question. Second, let’s make it clear that we are neither immigration attorneys, educated in the ways of US laws affecting foreigners, nor are we visa advisers, or anything remotely like that. Just one question, my exchange program will be from January til May 2014 (as it’s written on the DS-2019) and the J-1 visa I received expires in 2018. This means I should leave the USA in May and then I won’t be able to visit the USA in the future with the same J-1 visa right? What about if I’d like to stay for any kind of summer job and after that comin back to my home country (Italy)?
So if, for example, your program allows you to work in the USA, you can not work before the start date and after the end date. This is usually the case of Work & Travel participants wishing to visit Canada or Mexico.
Allow about one week for the postal service to deliver your DS-2019 to your sponsor and and another to deliver it back to you. But I am wanting to arrive in the US in April and travel around there as well as some parts of Central America. You are not our participant – what made you ask us rather than the company you applied through?
Eg, I have one for the summer to work as a camp counsellor and then I apply for another in September to work as an aupair? For example if I entered the US 10 days before the date on my form would I still be able to stay for 30 days after or would it only be 20? The new US Federal Regulations effective from May 11, 2012 require that all jobs are vetted and approved by program sponsors before students are allowed to start working in them. I got chance to go home, to Europe but I am affraid to leave USA few days before my I 94 card expires (it does on 29th of August).
So could I stay in usa just traveling untill ends of Oct or earlies Nov without problems when I want to come back to USA in the future?

If I obtain J1 intern VISA via your company can I apply for a student VISA to Australia while in the USA in J1 intern? My visa expires on 02March 2013 and my exchange program also ends on 02 March(also mentioned in DS-2019) form.
On the other hand, you can’t participate in the program without a valid DS2019 form anyway. That is about a month and a half before I start working, would I be able to enter the us on a visitors visa, and then leave the country ( go to Canada) and re enter on a j1 visa? But you need to turn to your J1 visa sponsor with these questions, not to the wild wild Internet. My question is, if the course ends first week of may and i want to travel for 6-8 weeks after, do i need to have my DS2019 edited to end the first week of June, so i can stay 30 days after that, or can i apply for a tourist visa strait away so i can keep travelling.
So there’s no guarantee that what we’re saying is not actually a complete nonsense!
For example, if you want to visit Canada while in America, and you have a multiple-entry visa, the visa expiration date is the latest date when you can re-enter the USA. You now know that in order to be able to return to the USA, you must have a multiple-entry visa (this will be your second entry) and you must re-enter the USA before your visa expires. What you have to do, is to send your DS-2019 form to your program sponsor to have it signed and stamped in one of these fields. Also make sure you have multiple-entry visa and plan your trip in such a way that you return to the USA while your visa is still valid.
In terms of general visa rules, you can enter the country at any time when your visa is valid.
If you’d like to receive the level of support and expertise that we can offer in the future, we’ll be happy if you apply to us!
The sponsors are required to terminate and send home any student that starts working in an unapproved job. Otherwise, your employer should find an immigration law firm that deals with work visas and they’ll probably end up using either H1B or H2B, depending on how specialized and extraordinary your skills are. And although anybody can find them through Google it is against the law for anybody but your program sponsor to offer you support during your participation in the program.
I received a card with my visa saying I can stay up to 30 days after the end of the program. And once you get a new one, your SEVIS ID won’t match the one with which your previous visa was issued. I want to be able to leave the USA and go to mexico, canada for tourism before, during and after my course. We’re just sharing here what we think, based on common sense and on what our past participants shared with us. If you wish to take advantage of our expertise, we’ll be happy to have you apply throu us in the future. This is helpful for instance when you are a student and you fail an exam and have to repeat it.
I ve been already in Canada few times during my second year and never had any issue to re-enter US.
So, would I be allowed to stay in the US until 14th march or do I have to return on 02 March itself?
You can stay until the date shown on your I94 card…unless you finished your program early. So does the DS2019 have to say mulitple entry on it for me to be able to leave and come in when i want to travel, or does the visa say multiple entry. There are all kinds of opportnities for students of certain specific fields, so you will eventually end up discussing this with your adviser at your school anyway, but the general rule for the J1 programs is that you can stay inside the USA for up to 30 days after the end of your program. Your visa only allows you to enter the USA for the purpose of participating in your program. Of course I will speak to my employer to check they don’t mind me finishing a week early. I have a new host family and also I work for agency, I just heard I shouldnt leave USA 30 days before I have to.
If your school extends your program in SEVIS, to allow you to retake the exam, you don’t need a new I94. My agency says that its risky to go during last 2 months since I might have a problem to come back to US. What do You think, why should I have problem if Im coming back to finish my au pair year and can have a proof like my ticket booked by CC to my home country.. If your school updates (fakes?) your DS2019 and adds a later date as the end of your program, you’re fine. So if you finish your program on March 2nd as planned, and your I94 shows that you can stay extra 30 days (i.e. So if you wish to visit also Canada or Mexico after the end of your studies, and your flight home leaves from the USA, you won’t be able to re-enter the USA without a new visa. And even if your J1 visa is still valid, your school would have to mark in your DS2019 that you will be re-entering the country to re-join the program! If you are from one of the visa waiver countries (you didn’t mention what country you are a citizen of), you can re-enter the US using the ESTA, of course.

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