J2 Visa

Frequently Asked Questions & Answers

21. I am visiting the U.S. on a J-2 visa. Why are FICA Retirement and FICA Med being deducted from my paycheck?

  1. Nonresident foreign national
  2. Present in the U.S. under an F, J, M, or Q visa
  3. Performing services in accordance with the primary purpose of the visa’s issuance. The spouse and children dependents of the primary visa holder (normally holding an F-2, J-2, M-2, or Q-2 visa) are not eligible for the section 3121(b)(19) exemption because the purpose for their visit to the U.S. is to accompany the primary visa holder, not to work

22. Is insurance requirement mandatory for J-1 and J-2 visa holders?

Pursuant to the U.S. Department of State regulations and the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations governing Exchange Visitor Programs (22 CFR 514.14), all J-1 and accompanying J-2 family members are required to obtain health, accident, medical evacuation and repatriation of remains insurance coverage while in the U.S. The insurance policies must cover the exchange visitor and all accompanying dependents.

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23. Am I subject to the two-year home residency requirement on J-2 visa?

Yes, you are subject to the two-year home residency requirement (HRR) on J-2 visa, if the principal J-1 visa holder is subject to the HRR.

24. Can I apply for a waiver of the two-year home residency requirement independently from the J-1 visa holder?

In cases of death or divorce from the J-1, or when a J-2 child reaches the age of 21, the Waiver Review Division may entertain requests for waivers on behalf of the J-2. The Division will need:

  1. Completed data sheet, Form DS-2019 of the J-1, divorce decree or death certificate, whichever is applicable
  2. Copy of birth certificate in the case of a J-2 child

25. If the J-1 obtains a recommendation for waiver of the two-year home residency requirement, will that apply to the J-2 derivative applicants?

Yes, if the J-1 applies for and receives a favorable recommendation, members of the immediate family, if applicable, will be included.