Arrival Information for J-1 Scholars and Researchers
Welcome to the University of California, Riverside! We are excited to welcome you as an incoming J-1 international scholar. UC Riverside is proud to be a part of the U.S. Department of State's Exchange Visitor Program, which is a program meant to promote mutual understanding between the people of the United States and other countries through educational and cultural exchange.
The International Students and Scholars office supports and promotes the success, wellness and personal growth of the international students and scholars through expert advising, intercultural programming, and advocacy.
Please read through the information listed below. These resources are designed to help you adjust to living in Riverside and working as a member of the UCR community.
Check-in and Orientation
- You must check in with the International Students and Scholars Office as soon as you arrive at UCR.
- You and your dependents must also attend a mandatory J Orientation. Orientation sessions are typically the final Wednesday of each month (times vary).
Responsibilities and Maintenance of Status
Scholars are responsible for knowing the rules that affect your status. Maintenance of status requires all scholars to:
- Work at a site and pursue the purpose written on DS-2019
- No employment without explicit permission
- Strict adherence to travel rules
- Maintenance of adequate medical insurance
- Maintenance of a valid passport for 6 months+ past the program end date
- Payment of all ISS Online service fees [if applicable][Please see below]
*For more information about J Program Regulations, please see the J Program website Rules and Infractions.
If your UCR DS-2019 will expire before you complete your program objective, you can apply for extension of stay if you will continue doing the same activity.
Apply for an extension through your UCR department and submit all required documents in ISS Online.
Note that there are fees involved.
If you are planning to travel outside of the US, you must first obtain a travel signature at the International Students and Scholars (ISS) office. Your J-1 Advisor can help you determine the necessary preparation and documents you’ll need for travel.
To receive a travel signature, fill out the travel signature request form ahead of your trip and pick up your DS-2019 no later than three days ahead of scheduled travel. All travel signatures are valid for 12 months. International travel requires a valid passport and visa.
Scholars without income: All scholars are required to file with the IRS (for tax purposes) even if they did not receive an income from UCR. The following form should be filed with the IRS: [Non-Resident Alien for Tax Purposes, Form 8843]. This is not a tax return; it is the “Statement for Exempt Individuals and Individuals with a Medical Condition”.
Mail the form to:
Department of the Treasury
Internal Revenue Service Center
Austin, TX 73301-0215
Scholars with income:
If you receive income from UCR, you must pay income tax to the U.S. government unless you are exempt or excused under a tax treaty or special ruling of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
For help with tax filing, attend one of the ISS workshops on tax preparation. For more information, see the IRS website for International Taxpayers.
Dependents must be an unmarried child under 21 years of age or a spouse of a J-1 visa holder through UCR.
J-2 dependents may begin working only after receiving an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
For more information see the Department of State J-2 website.
- Subject to the same Two-Year Home Residency Requirement as J-1 visitors unless exempt.
- J-2 visas expire at the same time as the J-1 visa.