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International Scholar Relations

Transferring J-1 Sponsorship

Transfer to Another J-1 Sponsor Institution

Visiting Scholars may transfer from one sponsor to another only, if they are released by the first sponsor (WesternU) as required by the regulations. A transfer must be clearly consistent with the intent and purpose of the original program objective and category. A transfer does not extend the length of the maximum program duration of the category – the program end date as appropriate for the J-1 category indicated on the scholar’s DS-2019 Form, Section 4.

The WesternU host department/faculty supervisor must contact J1Program@westernu.edu to inform the ISR office regarding the proposed transfer to another University J-1 Program.

Please Note: Health Insurance for the scholar (and dependents) must be in effect as long as the scholar is in the U.S. and may be obtained with the new sponsor. Contact the J-1 RO/ARO at the new institution for insurance information.


Transfer Criterion

A J-1 scholar may transfer between programs as long as:

  • scholar is currently maintaining a valid J-1 status with current program sponsor;
  • scholar is in compliance with the Health Insurance Requirement;
  • purpose of the transfer is to complete the objective for which scholar was admitted to International Scholar status; and,
  • scholar remains within the same participant program category (e.g., you cannot change from J-1 Student Category to J-1 Research Scholar category)

The scholar should never terminate their research/teaching activities with the current program sponsor until their SEVIS record has been released to the new sponsor. The host department at the current institution must contact the J-1 RO/ARO in their international office or its equivalent before the scholar makes any changes in his/her program. The J-1 RO/ARO at the current insitution will contact the J-1 RO/ARO at WesternU to begin the transfer process.

The scholar will need to provide a detailed description of their planned activities at the new program at WesternU. The J-1 RO/ARO at the current institution and the J-1 RO/ARO at WesternU will use the activities description to determine:

  • the transfer is consistent with the goals of the scholar’s exchange program;
  • scholar is currently maintaining status; and,
  • transfer will not extend the scholar’s stay beyond the permissible time for the category as shown on the DS-2019 Form.
Updated:  August 2015