Saturday, March 18, 2017

J1 Visa process by Zeeshan Mansuri

1. Match day – YAYYYYYY! Match day done and dusted. Now, what’s the next step?
2. Wait for the email from your program coordinator. They will send it by next week.
3. You will receive a packet of your residency contract plus 100s of other forms from your program, which includes the same info to be filled in a gazillion times.
4. For J1, browse the MOH (Ministry of Health) website. Download the Statement Of Need (SON) application (attached with the post) and complete the bond papers and get it signed by 2 people, your father/mother and a gazetted officer (Check the application form for details). The bond basically states that IF you fail to return to India to complete the waiver, you/your Dad/Mom will pay 5 lakh rupees to the Government of India and IF you/your Dad/Mom fail to do so, the gazetted officer who signed the form will be liable to pay. Also, the gazette officer should have more than 7 years left in his/her service and CANNOT be a blood relative. Also, you will also require a sign from the gazetted officer’s boss to confirm that the gazetted officer is speaking the truth and has furnished the correct information.
5. Make sure to sign each and every page of the SON application at the bottom. Make sure to fill all the different annexure forms in the application as applicable.
6. Please plan to travel to New Delhi once they start issuing. They usually will give you a token number and will process only 25 a day (This varies from year to year). If you or your friend can go (your friend will need an authorization letter signed by you, authorizing him to get the SON in your place).
7. No bribing in the MOH office last year. It may change this year. (You get the point!!!)
8. ONCE YOU RECEIVE THE SON, MAKE SURE DATES OF YOUR RESIDENCY, YOUR NAME, SPECIALTY ARE ENTERED CORRECTLY. Remember it’s a Government office and they will be casual and make spelling mistakes.
9. Pay your SEVIS fee early. Your application will be processed by ECFMG by the order u paid your SEVIS fee. Make sure that all required documents are uploaded properly.
10. Send the NOC to the program. They will upload it to OASIS on the ECFMG website. ECFMG will take approximately 1 -3 weeks to send your DS 2019 form. Once you receive in your hand, you can schedule your visa interview after paying the appropriate fee.
11. The interview is very chilled out consisting of 3-5 questions. The visa officer will sign your ds 2019 and give it back to you (if he/she forgets, ask for it and keep it safe).
12. Passport in 3-5 days - bingo!!
13. Book your flight tickets by April 15th. Anytime later than that will hurt your dad's wallet by extra 150-200$. I would suggest going back ASAP.
14. In between, your program coordinator will be sending your more documents to sign and return.
15. All J1 applicants can start from India 30 days before the official start date of your program. (H1B people can start only 10 days before start date).
16. Visit all places you want to go and meet everyone you want to meet. Once you start residency, you will start missing all of that. These next 100 days are going to be THE golden period of your lifetime. THE last big vacation. Enjoy every minute of it!! Feel free to add info, correct anything or ask questions. Cheers! Good luck :) God bless :)
Zeeshan Mansuri


  1. The NOC or in this case the SON need to be send directly from Ministry of Heath office in the original sealed envelope.

    can someone through more light on step 10

    1. Hi I do not know the details.. since I went through h1

  2. Perfect guide lines for j1 visa process,thanks a lot,wish u best of luck for bright future.

    1. Would be great if you could answer the questions above and below your comment? Thanks

  3. Hey what does " when they start issuing" in point 6 mean. I have all my documents ready. Can I go to Nirman Bhawan this Monday March 27th. And please elaborate about token number. If I can please tell me how many days it usually takes to get SON. Will I be able to get in a day or two.

    1. Hi I do not know the details.. since I went through h1