J-2 work authorization
You may pick up an application packet for J-2 employment authorization at the immigration services office in the Franklin Street Gym, 817 W. Franklin St., or download it here .
In order to have a complete application packet you must submit the following documents:
- Completed USCIS Form I-765 (available in the application packet)
- Check or money order for $380, made payable to the USCIS
- Copy of the J-1 principle and the J-2 dependent’s DS-2019s
- Copy of the front and back of the J-1 and J-2’s I-94 cards
- Copy of the biographical information and expiration date of J-1 and J-2’s passport
- Two photographs that meet USCIS specifications (specifications available in the application packet)
- Signed statement that the employment is not for living expenses while in the U.S.
In order to apply, make an appointment to have the international student/scholar adviser review the packet and mail it directly to the USCIS, or you can mail it on your own. Please be sure to keep a copy of the completed application, and send the application by some type of receipted or registered mail.
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
Eastern Service Center
75 Lower Welden St.
St. Albans, Vermont 05479-0001
Once the USCIS receives your application, you should get a receipt notice within two weeks. This will indicate current processing times. Usually it takes at least three to four months for the Employment Authorization Document to be processed. When the card is issued, it will be mailed directly to the address listed on the Form I-765.
A J-2 may work only until the date authorized on the Employment Authorization Document or until the J-1 completes his or her program and returns home, whichever comes first. A J-2 may not remain in the U.S. after the J-1 leaves because the J-2 status is totally dependent on the J-1 status. If the J-1 changes to another status, such as H-1B, the J-2 loses J-2 status and work permission ends.
However, if the J-1 is still in status, you can apply to extend your work authorization by repeating the application process described above and including a photocopy of the current Employment Authorization Document with the items you send to the USCIS. Remember, it takes three to four months for extension approval, so apply early in order to keep employment authorization uninterrupted.