Extreme Hardship: Waiver of the Foreign Residence Requirement for Physicians with J-1 Visas
If you are an exchange visitor (J-1 Visa), you are subject to the two-year foreign residence requirement if:
- Your participation in the exchange program was financed at any time in whole or in part, directly or indirectly, by an agency of the U.S. Government or by the government of your country of citizenship or nationality or last foreign residence;
- Prior to being admitted as an exchange visitor, or acquiring such status after admission, your country of citizenship or nationality or last foreign residence was designated by the U.S. Secretary of State as clearly requiring your specialized knowledge or skill; or
- You were admitted as an exchange visitor or acquired such status after admission on or after January 10, 1977, to participate in graduate medical education or training.
Our firm handles exceptional hardship waivers for J-1 physicians in the third category, those who are here for medical education or training. These physicians unfortunately also do not qualify for No Objection Statements from their home country:
Exchange visitors (J-1); spouses (J-2) who are no longer married to the exchange visitors; or sons and daughters of the J-1 and/or J-2, who married or who are 21 years of age or older, may apply for a waiver of the two-year foreign residence requirement of INA section 212(e) based on exceptional hardship to the exchange visitor’s U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident spouse or children.
We prepare your application to show that the U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident spouse or children could suffer exceptional hardship in the event that the J-1 spouse is forced to complete her foreign residency requirement. Through extensive research, organization of financial documents and detailed statements, we address (1) how the U.S. Citizen spouse will suffer exceptional hardship if he leaves the country with the J-1 spouse, and (2) how the U.S. Citizen spouse will suffer exceptional hardship if the J-1 spouse leaves without him.