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J2 Visa for Nigerians

The consular officer at the U.S. consulate or embassy issues the J-2 visa for dependents under the age of 21 years or spouses of a J-1 visa holder in the U.S. There is no limited number of people that can be granted the J-2 visa.

For more information regarding the J-2 visa for Nigerians, get in touch today with one of our immigration lawyers at IAS. Call us on +23413438882 or on +44 (0) 3316300929 or contact us online.

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    Want to Join Your Family in the US?

    We have successfully helped numerous J-1 visa holders from Nigeria get reunited with their spouses or dependant in the U.S. through a J-2 visa. If you need assistance with your application, we can guide you through the eligibility requirements and support you along the way. Let us handle all the complexities and make your application process as stress-free as possible.

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    Overview of J-2 Visa

    The J-2 visa is a nonimmigrant visa issued to dependents of a J-1 visa holder who stays in the U.S. The dependents could be the spouse or unmarried children who are under the age of 21 years.

    As a Nigerian, with the J-2 status you may stay with the J-1 visa holder in the U.S. as long as the J-1 visa holder stays in the U.S. Therefore if there are changes to the duration of stay of the J-1 visa holder, it will also change your J-2 visa duration.

    There is no annual cap on J2 visa issuance. Any number of relatives may apply for it as long as they match the requirements. J2 visa holders can work and study in the US with certain limitations.

    Apart from the spouse and unmarried children (under 21 years), any other family member of the J-1 holder has to apply for a B-1 or B-2 visitor visa to enter the U.S.

    Who Is Eligible for a J-2 Visa?

    There are some requirements you need to meet in order to qualify for a J-2 visa for Nigerians. You need to be:

    • The unmarried child of a J-1 visa holder and under 21 years old.
    • The spouse of a J-1 visa holder.
    • Permitted to accompany a J-1 visa holder from their programme or sponsor.

    Depending on the programme or sponsor, case specific requirements may exist despite the fact that these are the general J-2 visa requirements.

    You must have a genuine proof of marriage as a Nigerian spouse to a J-1 visa holder in the U.S. before you can apply for the J-2 visa. Therefore, you can’t apply for a J-2 visa if you’re just in a dating relationship or partnership with the J-1 visa holder.

    However, if you’re in a dating relationship or partnership, you may still apply to join your partner in the U.S. by applying for the B2 Visitor visa. You may submit your application with the intention of traveling to the U.S. to see family and friends. Your ability to sustain your stay financially is the main requirement.

    How to Apply for a J-2 Visa?

    The application process for the J-2 visa is not totally different from that of the J-1 visa. The sponsor of the J-1 visa only has to send in different DS-2019 forms for each applicant of the J-2 visa.

    The details of the sponsor and exchange visitor are all inclusive in the Form DS-2019. It also bears the description of the programme which includes, visa category, estimated cost and start and finish dates.

    Then complete and submit the nonimmigrant Form DS-160 online. Once you pay your application fee and submit all the required documents the embassy will start processing it.

    You’ll be invited for a visa interview at the embassy once your application has been processed. The U.S. consulate office will ask you about your finances, your plans in the U.S and your relationship with the J-1 visa holder.

    Additionally, you’ll need to take a vaccination or a medical examination if required. The U.S embassy typically recommends a clinic or doctor. Because of this, they won’t accept any medical examination you do elsewhere.

    Once your interview is successful, you’ll get your J-2 visa. With the J-2 visa, you can either travel together with the J-1 visa holder or wait to join them later in the U.S. This implies that you cannot travel before the J-1 visa holder in any case.

    J-2 Visa Application Required Documents

    At your interview for the J-2 visa, you need to have the following documents:

    • Visa fee receipt
    • International passport that is valid for at least six months beyond your intended period of stay in the U.S.
    • DS-160 confirmation page with barcode
    • U.S. visa standard passport-photograph
    • Interview confirmation letter
    • J-1 visa beneficiary DS-2019 confirmation form
    • Copy of affidavit and photos with witnesses if married at the registrar
    • Wedding album and cards
    • J-1 visa holder spouse marriage certificate
    • Childbirth certificates for unmarried children under 21
    • DS-2019 form confirmation
    • J-1 trainee or intern classifications DS-7002 form confirmation
    • Proof of enough funds to cover expenditures.

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      J-2 Visa and Funding Requirements for Dependents

      The J-2 visa applicants who want to join the J-1 visa holder will prove that they can support themselves financially on a monthly basis with at least $1,310. The first J-2 dependent must have a monthly fund of at least $666 with additional dependent having a monthly fund of $562. The financial support of the J-2 dependent must always be available until the end of the J-1’s programme.

      For instance, a family of four would need to prove their support for the J-1 visa holder with a monthly fund of $1,310 with

      $562 per child and $666 for the spouse monthly. Therefore, the total of the per month must always be available until the J-1’s programme ends.

      Traveling Outside the U.S. as a J-2 Visa Holder

      Before you will be admitted into the United States as a J-2 visa holder, the J-1 holder already has to be in the United States. After your initial entry you may remain in the U.S. or travel independently of the J-1 visa holder as long as both of you are maintaining status and the J-1’s absence is not long.

      Regulations prohibit a J-2 from remaining in the country while the J-1 is abroad for a long period of time since the J-2’s status is reliant on the J-1’s status. The J-2 should leave the country at the same time as the J-1 if the J-1 will be gone for longer than 30 days.

      To do so, the J-1 must fill out and submit an Extended Absence Request. While outside of the US, the J-2 does not have to travel alongside the J-1.

      J-2 Visa Processing Time

      The time it takes to process a J2 visa varies based on a number of variables. For instance, a significant factor is the workload at the embassy where you applied. Your country of residency is another important consideration.

      When applied at the same time, the J1 visa processing time may also impact your J2. The processing time for a J1 visa is one to two weeks, and during this time you may also receive your J2 visa.

      However, if you apply for J2 in a different way or after processing J1, the processing time may be closer to 30 days. In most situations, it is best to apply for your J2 visa as soon as possible.

      J-2 Visa Validity and Extension

      The J2 visa has the same duration of validity as the J1 visa. For instance, if the J1 visa is valid for two years, the J2 visa will be as well.

      The J2 visa holder is qualified for the same duration of the extension if the J1 visa holder applies for and is granted one. You will be given a fresh DS-2019 form following your approval.

      Both J2 dependents and most J1 visa categories demand two years of home residency. To qualify for the same or a comparable visa, you must first spend two years in Nigeria after returning.

      If the J1 category does not have the two-year home residency requirement, as a J2 visa holder, you may switch to another nonimmigrant visa. Some J1 visa holders may also be able to request a waiver of the required home residency. You as their J2 dependent are also covered by any waivers given to holders of J1 visas.

      If you discover a job that makes you eligible for another visa, such as the H-1B visa, you may be able to change your status with the waiver. For the opportunity to live and work in the U.S. on a permanent basis, you can also apply for a green card. Because you’re the J-1 visa holder J-2 dependent, you will automatically become eligible to apply for a green card if they qualify for a green card.

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        J-2 EAD Application

        Seeking employment in the U.S. is one of the most essential things you are allowed to do as a J-2 visa holder. You can get the Employment Authorisation Document (EAD) when you get into the U.S. and then use it to seek employment.

        After you’ve arrived in the U.S., it is advised that you apply for the EAD once you’ve stayed up to 3 to 4 months in so that it doesn’t raise doubts about your financial situation. This is because you have provided proof to the U.S. government that you have enough financial support for your expenses during the first few months of your stay in the United States.

        Documents Required for EAD

        Provided the following documents when you want to apply for the EAD:

        • Application for Employment Authorization (Form I-765)
        • 2 photographs
        • Forms I-94, passports, copies of yours and that of the J-1 holder’s DS-2019 forms
        • Your marriage certificate
        • If you have already secured employment, provide a letter from your employer stating that you will not be using your pay to assist the holder of a J-1 visa.
        • Statement about the reason you need the EAD.
        • By entering the expiration date from your DS-2019 form in the appropriate field on the EAD statement, you can ask for your EAD to remain valid till the end of your time in the U.S.

        You should be ready to engage in part or full time work in the U.S. once your EAD is granted. You can request an extension if your EAD expires before the expiration date of your DS-2019.

        Can J-2 Visa Holders Study in the U.S.?

        As a holder of J-2 visa, you may be allowed to engage in academic courses as a degree-seeking student.

        You can enroll full or part time in any academic programme. Notably, since you must live with the J-1 visa holder as a dependent, you shouldn’t apply to a school that demands relocation.

        You can request a change to an F-1 student visa if your studies aren’t complete when your J-2 visa expires. To apply for a status adjustment, your immigration status must be exempt from the two year home residency requirement.

        How to Obtain a Work Permit for a J-2 Visa Holder

        A permit from the United States Citizen and Immigration Service will make you eligible to work in the U.S. as a J-2 visa holder. You can apply for the work permit if it has been proven that the income from your job as a J-2 visa holder (with whom your visa is linked) won’t be used to support the J-1 visa holder.

        The process is quite simple because the essential requirements are to submit Form I-765 together with an application for employment authorization to USCIS and pay the filing fee. You must then submit the form along with additional paperwork, such as your J1 DS-2019, DS-2019, passport photographs and international passport copy.

        You’ll either file the form to the USCIS Dalas Lockbox or to the USCIS Phoenix Lockbox. However, the Form I-765 bears the address you’ll file the application.

        The USCIS will issue you an EAD if your application is approved. The processing time for an EAD can be up to 90 days. Its validity is typically until the end date on the DS-2019 or for a year.

        Upon the expiration of your EAD, you can renew it, and it’s recommended you apply for its renewal four months before it expires. Also, you may apply for a Social Security Number (SSN) with your EAD.

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          How Can IAS Help?

          During your J-2 visa application, you need to put so many things into consideration. You will need to meet the eligibility criteria for the visa and also know the fees you need to pay in order to get the visa.

          Additionally, there are certain supporting documents that must be included in your application in order for it to meet the USCIS standard. And most importantly, you would want your hard earned money to be spent wisely.

          This is why we recommend you seek expert guidance on how to carry out your J-2 visa application. Our immigration lawyers at IAS will help you arrange all the needed documents and guide you through the application process with a higher chance of approval.

          Besides that, we will help and advise you on the J-2 visa rejection reasons and prepare you for your visa interview by giving you tips that will help increase your chance of a successful interview.

          For more information regarding the J-2 visa for Nigerians, the required documents, and any other immigration related question, get in touch with us on +23413438882 or our U.S. office +44 (0) 3316300929 or contact us online.

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                    Frequently Asked Questions

                    You can stay in the U.S. as long as the J-1 (principal) visa holder’s status is still valid.

                    You can only apply for a J-2 visa work permit after getting to the United States as you are dependent on the status of the J-1 visa holder.

                    Once you have a travel validation signature, you are permitted to leave the U.S. on your own. A J-2 visa holder may stay outside the U.S. for an unlimited period of time. Don’t forget to bring all of your documentation and notify InterExchange before each trip.

                    J-2 dependents must be covered by health insurance for the duration of their visit that suits the minimum standards set by the U.S. Department of State.

                    Before traveling outside the U.S., you will need a travel validation signature from InterExchange if you intend to leave the U.S. while participating in your programme.