Extension Procedures

This page outlines the procedures to follow if you need to extend your permission to stay at Georgia State University to accomplish your original program objective(s) as a J-1 exchange visitor.

If your I-94 Departure Record card is marked "J-1 D/S", your J-1 status in the United States expires on the program end date shown in item #3 of your Form DS-2019.

If your I-94 Departure Record card is marked with a specific date, your J-1 status in the United States expires on that date.

You should consult your Responsible Officer to determine eligibility before requesting an extension.

If your J-1 sponsor is Georgia State University, then your Responsible Officer is the Scholar Advisor in the International Student & Scholar Services (ISSS) office at Georgia State University.

If your J-1 sponsor is another agency and you are uncertain how to reach your Responsible Officer, Georgia State's scholar adviser will help you find out.

You are eligible to apply for an extension of status if:

  • You are working towards the original program objective indicated in section 4 of your most recent Form DS-2019,
  • You are maintaining your status as a J-1 Exchange Visitor
  • You can demonstrate adequate funding for yourself and any J-2 dependents during the period of the proposed extension (at least $1513/month for yourself, $500/month for your spouse, and $300/month for each child under 21),
  • You and your J-2 dependents are currently maintaining and will continue to maintain health insurance coverage that meets J visa requirements, and
  • Your extension will not carry you beyond five years in the United States as a J-1 Visiting Professor or Research Scholar, or beyond six months in the United States as a J-1 Short Term Scholar.

An extension of the J-1 program may be obtained while a waiver request is pending, as long as you are within the maximum period of duration for your J-1 program category. However, if and when you receive a favorable recommendation or approval of the waiver, the U.S. Department of State no longer considers you eligible for further extension, although you may complete the current J-1 program period. For this reason, you should time your application after your program has been extended to the maximum time available and while there is still plenty of time remaining in the program in case of delays in the waiver procedures.

At least two weeks before the end date on your current Form DS-2019, your Department must initiate and submit your extension request through e-Forms on iStart at istart.gsu.edu.  You should consult your department if you wish to request an extension.

The documents required for an extension request are as follows:

  1. Extension Request Letter from Department
    • The Georgia State University host department must write a letter supporting the extension request.
    • The letter must be on university letterhead and include the following information:
      • Dates of the requested extension period (MM/DD/YYYY - MM/DD/YYYY)
      • Reasons more time is needed in order to complete the original program objective, and why the objective could not be completed within the original period
      • Description of the activities in which the J-1 scholar will engage
      • Funding/salary to be provided by Georgia State University (if applicable)
        • If funding/salary provided by Georgia State University, the research/academic job title the scholar will hold (ex: Postdoctoral Research Associate, Limited Term Researcher).
        • Please note that temporary professional or classified staff titles are not eligible for J-1 scholar sponsorship.
  2. Extension Request Letter from J-1 Scholar
    • The J-1 scholar must write a letter requesting the extension. The letter must explain the specific research-related reasons why an extension is needed in order to complete the original program objective.
  3. Proof of Financial Support
    • Evidence of sufficient funding for the J-1 scholar and all J-2 dependents must be provided and uploaded in PDF format.
    • The uploaded document must:
      • Be an original hard copy
      • In English
      • No older than one year
      • On the official letterhead of the funding organization
      • Specify the amount of liquid funds available in U.S. dollars.
      • Documentation of monthly salary must confirm that the salary will continue to be paid for the period of extension.
      • If Georgia State University will provide funding, state the total amount provided for the extension period in the Georgia State University  support letter described above.
    • The required minimum monthly funding amounts are:
      • J-1 scholar:  $1513 per month for the amount of time requested in the extension
      • J-2 spouse:  $500 per month for the amount of time requested in the J-1's extension
      • J-2 child (under age 21):  $300 per month for the amount of time requested in the J-1's extension
  4. Proof of Insurance
    • The J-1 scholar must provide documentation showing proof of current health insurance coverage for him/herself and all J-2 dependents that meets all of the following requirements, as mandated by U.S. law:
      • At least US $100,000 coverage for each personal accident or illness
      • At least US $25,000 for coverage of repatriation of remains
      • At least US $50,000 for coverage of medical evacuation to scholar's home country
      • A deductible no greater than US $500 per accident or illness
      • The insurance company must be underwritten by an insurance corporation holding an A.M. Best rating of "A-" or above; an Insurance Solvency International, Ltd. (ISI) rating of "A-i" or above; a Standard & Poor's Claims-paying Ability rating of "A-" or above; or a Weiss Research, Inc. rating of B+ or above.
  5. J-1 Insurance Compliance Form (PDF)
    • The J-1 scholar must complete and sign this form.

After reviewing and approving your documents, your J-1 responsible officer will, within ten (10) business days, issue you a new Form DS-2019 extending your stay.  If your I-94 card has been marked with a "D/S," then the extension is complete. If your I-94 card is marked with a specific end date rather than "D/S", contact the Scholar Advisor in ISSS immediately; you may need to travel outside the United States in order to complete your extension.

Caution!  Extension of your permission to stay is your responsibility. If you stay beyond your authorized end date, you will be illegally present in the United States. Make certain that you apply well in advance if you need to extend your stay.