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Waiver of the Two-Year Home Residency Requirement

If you are found to be “subject” to the 2 year home residency requirement 212(e) and you do not wish to comply with the requirement you may want to consider your options for a waiver of this requirement.  It is extremely important that you consult with an OIS advisor PRIOR to formally pursuing a waiver of the 2-year home residency requirement.  Once the OIS receives a copy of the U.S. Department of State’s letter of no objection, we can no longer extend your J-1 status.

For the most specific and up to date information regarding waivers, please see the U.S. Department of State website

OIS advisors are happy to answer general questions about the 2 year home residency requirement and the impact of a waiver on your J-1 status, but as your J-1 sponsor we do not provide step-by-step guidance in the waiver application process.  The State Department has a very transparent process for filing and tracking your waiver application.

Waiver Eligibility and Grounds for a Waiver

Please read the information regarding waiver eligiblity carefully as there are detailed requirements that must be met in order for you to qualify.  Medical doctors who are subject to 212(e) based on receiving medical education and training in the U.S. are not eligible under certain grounds.  If you believe you are eligible to pursue a waiver but need assistance in preparing an application the OIS would advise you to consult with an immigration attorney who has significant experience in preparing waiver cases.

There are five general grounds for the pursuit of a waiver

  1. No Objection Statement from your Home Government 
  2. Request by an interested U.S. Federal Government Agency 
  3. Persecution 
  4. Exceptional Hardship to a U.S. citizen (or lawful permanent resident) spouse or child of an Exchange Visitor 
  5. Request by a State Public Health Department or its equivalent (Conrad State 30 Program)


If you are currently participating in a J Exchange Visitor program with Johns Hopkins you are strongly advised to speak to an advisor at the OIS PRIOR to taking any steps towards a waiver.  The timing of pursuing a waiver has a direct impact on your current program and you should discuss this impact with an OIS advisor.  Once we receive a copy of the Department of State’s letter of no objection, we can no longer extend your J-1 status.

If you have questions about J-1 Exchange Visitor status, please contact the OIS at [email protected].