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Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq.
Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq., Immigration Lawyer
Category: Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 105575
Experience:  10+ years of experience in various aspects of U.S. Immigration Law.
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I'm currently holding visa J-2 and I'm turning 21 in a month.

Customer Question

I'm currently holding visa J-2 and I'm turning 21 in a month. Am I eligible for the "grace period" which allows me to stay in the US 30 days after the visa expires?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Immigration Law
Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Welcome to JustAnswer! My name is***** I am a licensed attorney and I am here to help resolve your legal issue. Tackling legal issues can sometimes get cumbersome or confusing. Should you need to chat on the phone, private email or need help reviewing documentation, I am happy to do so for a small additional cost. Let me know at any time during our question and answer session if you are interested in these – I am happy to give you more details! You are NOT charged per question and you are NOT charged per response, so post at your desire! Just please remember that sometimes the law does not have an easy or convenient solution and that is not the fault of the expert. Please do not shoot the messenger.
You have the same grace period as the J-1, but your situation is different. It isn't that the J-1 is expiring, it is that you are aging out. It would be the same if you were a spouse of a J-1 and you got a divorce. So whatever you do, you need to do it now in the next few weeks to change your status. You can try to get into an F-1 student program, for example, or get into a J-1 program of your own. Here are a couple of links to help you with that:
http://studyinthestates.dhs.gov/
http://j1visa.state.gov/programs/
Now that I have given you an answer, you may rate me positively OR ask for additional information. Please do not rate me negatively for bad news or things that you may already know. That does not help you or me. I am here to help you and I am on your side. Give me a chance to help you. All you have to do is respond asking for additional information. You are NOT charged per question nor are you charged per response. If this seems a little complicated or overwhelming, I can also offer you an additional service for a small fee where we can speak in private over the phone or through email that may be helpful (this is a public forum where anyone can read the responses). Feel free to decline it, but if you do, please remember that I am not given a salary, so the only way that I am compensated is if you rate me positively. So at least please use the smiley faces and a bonus is always appreciated if you feel I earned it. Also, your question does NOT close just because it says, "To finish". I can still answer additional questions for you without additional charge. If I do not hear from you, I will automatically send that additional offer request. Thank you for your understanding and if you would like to request me in the future, just type: FOR GUILLERMO in the subject line and message box.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you so much for the response! Just to make this clear: I AM allowed to stay in the US for 30 days after my J-2 visa expires. I'm currently in the process of getting an F-1 visa but I won't be getting it until mid July so if I'm allowed to stay for an extra 30 days I won't have to leave the country.
Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
You are NOT allowed to stay. However, IF you file for change of status to F-1 BEFORE you turn 21 AND you can begin the program within 30 days of approval of the F-1, then you can stay. Please let me know if you have additional questions and please do not forget to rate my service to you positively (not the state of the law) as that is the only way that I can get credit for my assistance. Even after you rate the service, I can still answer additional questions for you without additional charge. And don't forget that bonuses are always appreciated! Thank you.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
My visa is expiring on June 20th. I won't get my F-1 visa approved until July 15th. Does this mean that I have to be out of the country between those dates?
Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
If you file the I-539 before June 20th, then you do not have to leave. Work closely with your Designated School Officer (DSO). Let me know if you need anything else, but please do not forget to rate me positively. As I do not receive a salary, it is the only way that I get credit for my service to you. You are not charged again and I will not abandon you after you rate me positively if you have additional questions. Thank you.
Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
By the way, is the principal J-1 subject to 212(e)?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I would like to work with you more closely on this. let me know how I should contact you to discuss additional terms and fees.
Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Is the principle J-1 subject to 212(e)?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Yes.
Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Then unfortunately that is the one problem that you cannot wipe away. To get into F-1 student status, you have to leave the U.S. not because of what we discussed before but because of the 212(e) issue. So you will need to leave the U.S. and apply to come back on an F-1 student visa. Would it matter much if you stayed beyond June 20th as long as you left not too soon after June 20th? No, it wouldn't much matter but if you left before June 20th, you would not have to convince the visa officer that your overstay was reasonable and would not happen again. If you leave after June 20, you have to be convincing to the immigration officer. Let me know if you need anything else, but please do not forget to rate me positively. As I do not receive a salary, it is the only way that I get credit for my service to you. You are not charged again and I will not abandon you after you rate me positively if you have additional questions. Thank you.
Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Hello. I'm just following up with you to see how everything is going. Did my answer help? Please let me know. Thank you!
Expert:  Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your kindness and respect. Good luck to you.

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