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IMG Visa Issues International Medical Graduates and Students discussion US Visa issues.


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Old 03-17-2016
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Default J1 research or research on visitors?? Please help

Hi could someone please tell me what would be better accepting j1 research in a good university hospital or doing volunteer research on visitor's visa? what would be the implication's for residency (in terms of visa) if one takes up j1 research?
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Old 03-17-2016
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Originally Posted by Usmle89 View Post
Hi could someone please tell me what would be better accepting j1 research in a good university hospital or doing volunteer research on visitor's visa? what would be the implication's for residency (in terms of visa) if one takes up j1 research?
Depending on where you are from, J1 research scholar visa (even the short term J1 which is for 6 months) may carry the two year home residence requirement rule (HRR). If you are from India, every J1 visa (irrespective of the category) for medical doctors has the HRR rule and under no circumstances a no obligation to return to India certificate is issued. If you do not recieve a waiver for the HRR rule from the government, once your research is done you will have to go back to your country for 2 years before you can change your status to H1B or apply for green card (even if you get married to a US citizen!). There is a possibility to switch from J1 research scholar to J1 alien physician for residency (google this to read about it in the ecfmg website) but your DS-2019 and I-94 of research scholar status of current J1 has to be still valid when you apply for change to alien physician status. ( regardless to say this is not always practical as most people would usually sponsor J1 research for 1 year at first and if they chose not to extend the sponsorship there is no way you would retain valid DS-2019 when u apply for residency and would have to go back to complete the HRR rule. But if you recieve sponsorship for longer duration, a switch may be possible if the duration of stay on DS-2019 and I-94 has not expired). Also, this process of change of status applied to DoS by ecmfg takes 2-3 months and regardless to say its complicated (look at the detailed requirements on the ecfmg website). If the change of status is accepted though, your J1 alien physician visa would still have a limit for 7 years and any duration spent under category of research scholar would not be counted.
You may also apply for J1 clinical visa after J1 research visa expires but you would now be subject to 4 years HRR.
If you want to do residency on H1b, research under J1 is a very bad idea cause there is no way u can change from J1 research to H1b residency unless u complete 2 year HRR rule or get a waiver.
Volunteer research is simple, obviously. However, given the time limit not much may be accomplished in terms of publications (this varies depending on who u get to work with though) as research takes time. But u would still learn and its certainly counted as experience.
Good luck!

Last edited by dsrp; 03-22-2016 at 06:16 AM.
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Old 03-23-2016
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Originally Posted by dsrp View Post
Depending on where you are from, J1 research scholar visa (even the short term J1 which is for 6 months) may carry the two year home residence requirement rule (HRR). If you are from India, every J1 visa (irrespective of the category) for medical doctors has the HRR rule and under no circumstances a no obligation to return to India certificate is issued. If you do not recieve a waiver for the HRR rule from the government, once your research is done you will have to go back to your country for 2 years before you can change your status to H1B or apply for green card (even if you get married to a US citizen!). There is a possibility to switch from J1 research scholar to J1 alien physician for residency (google this to read about it in the ecfmg website) but your DS-2019 and I-94 of research scholar status of current J1 has to be still valid when you apply for change to alien physician status. ( regardless to say this is not always practical as most people would usually sponsor J1 research for 1 year at first and if they chose not to extend the sponsorship there is no way you would retain valid DS-2019 when u apply for residency and would have to go back to complete the HRR rule. But if you recieve sponsorship for longer duration, a switch may be possible if the duration of stay on DS-2019 and I-94 has not expired). Also, this process of change of status applied to DoS by ecmfg takes 2-3 months and regardless to say its complicated (look at the detailed requirements on the ecfmg website). If the change of status is accepted though, your J1 alien physician visa would still have a limit for 7 years and any duration spent under category of research scholar would not be counted.
You may also apply for J1 clinical visa after J1 research visa expires but you would now be subject to 4 years HRR.
If you want to do residency on H1b, research under J1 is a very bad idea cause there is no way u can change from J1 research to H1b residency unless u complete 2 year HRR rule or get a waiver.
Volunteer research is simple, obviously. However, given the time limit not much may be accomplished in terms of publications (this varies depending on who u get to work with though) as research takes time. But u would still learn and its certainly counted as experience.
Good luck!

Thank you so much this has really helped me.
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