J-1 Visa & Documents



Your passport must always be valid at least 6 months into the future.

J-1 visa stamp

A J-1 visa stamp that U.S. consular officials place in your passport allows you to apply to enter or reenter the United States. It does not guarantee admission to the United States nor does it determine your length of stay.

If your J-1 visa expires while you are in the United States

It is not necessary to renew your visa as long as you remain in the country. A visa can be secured only at a U.S. embassy or consulate abroad. Canadians do not require a visa.

I-94 admission record

The electronic record of your I-94, after arrival in the United States, along with a valid Form DS-2019 permits you to stay temporarily in the United States as a J-1 student.

A new I-94 each time you enter the United States

Each time you enter the United States, you will be issued a new I-94 card with a new admission number. The exception is when you reenter the country after visits of 30 days or less to Canada, Mexico, and adjacent islands.

Renewing or replacing your passport

Lost or stolen? Report a lost or stolen passport to the police. Your home country government may require a police report before issuing a new passport. Renewing or replacing your passport: Contact your country’s consulate in the United States.


The DS-2019 form is issued to you by Washington State University. It indicates that you have been screened and selected for participation in the Exchange Visitor Program with WSU as your sponsor. This document lets you apply for a J visa to enter the United States.

  • Present your DS-2019 when entering the United States. You must present the DS-2019 along with your passport and visa every time you enter the United States.
  • Keep your DS-2019 valid at all times. Your DS-2019 remains valid until the program end date indicated. Do not let your DS-2019 expire.
  • Update your DS-2019 through your WSU advisor. Information on the DS-2019 is also stored in the SEVIS database. Updates must be made through your advisor at WSU. Contact International Student and Scholar Services if you have questions.

Keep all your documents

Do not throw away old copies of your visa documents. They provide proof that you have been maintaining legal status, and you may need them in the future.

Keep your documents safe

Store your important documents in a secure location in your home, in a bank safe-deposit box, or in another secure location.