J-1 exchange visitors subject to two-year home residency have a few bases on which they may apply for a waiver of the requirement:
- Conrad 30 – being employed as a medical doctor in an underserved area
- “No Objection” from home government, the U.S. Department of State, and/or the J-1 program sponsor
- Exceptional hardship
- Request by an Interested U.S. Federal Agency
There is no perfect formula for any of these methods. An individual’s chances of a successful J waiver application depend on a variety of factors: their home country, the reason why they are subject the requirement, their program sponsor, and the circumstances of their lives.
The U.S. Department of State website has several valuable pages of information regarding the home residency requirement: