All About Securing a WAIVER

There are different ways to apply for a waiver. 

But, why apply for a WAIVER?
After the J1 visa program, you have to go home for 2 years before you can apply for another J1 program again. You want a waiver because it will give you permission to apply for H1b or green card. But without a sponsor of "another visa", waiver is useless, you still go home when your visa expires.

There are currently five bases for applying for a waiver of the two-year home-country physical presence requirement, namely:

1) "No-Objection Statement" (NOS) from the Home Country 

Please see the details below.

2) Interest of a U.S. Government (USG) Agency - The Government agency (your school district) has the ability to request the waiver by suggesting that the applicant’s return to their home country would be detrimental to agency projects/work. -

3) Fear of Persecution - If you fear being persecuted based on your race, religion, or political opinion if you return to your home country, you may apply for a persecution waiver. -

4) Exceptional Hardship - To qualify under exceptional hardship, the applicant would have to be  inflicting difficulties on the U.S. spouse’s career, home-country conditions, income contribution of each spouse, discrimination, and educational opportunities. Economic or extreme psychological hardship, loss of health opportunities and loss of employment resulting in hardship -

5) The Conrad State 30-  This waiver option is called the State 30 Program because it is limited to 30 foreign medical graduate waivers per state per year.

Reasons for Denial:

About #1 - Revised Guidelines and Procedures on the Waiver of the Two-Year Home-Country Residency Requirement for Exchange Visitors.

[Not legal advice]

Please refer to this link for the full information about getting a waiver with the Philippine government:

Under the revised guidelines and procedures on the waiver of the two-year home-country residency requirement for exchange visitors, NOS applicants whose basis of application are among the following will no longer be issued an NOS automatically:

1. The applicant is married to a US citizen or legal permanent resident, or has a minor child who is a US citizen residing in the United States;

2. The applicant is a religious worker (priest, nun, missionary) in a recognized religious denomination; and

3. The applicant has an ailing family member (direct ascendant, descendant, or legal spouse) in the United States, and his/her separation from the latter would cause a severe and direct threat to the life of the same; and

4. The applicant is aged 60 and above.

But, the revised guidelines and procedures have opened up the possibility of getting a waiver for everyone!

How? Through the use of research and development and higher studies.

They have explicitly stated that only those applicants whose cases may fall under highly meritorious circumstances, such as, but not limited to:

  • applications from researchers or professionals whose continued stay in the United States will advance the Philippines' national interest
  • researches and studies that are sustainable and suitable to the current priorities of the Philippine government
  • investigations and considerations that will improve the quality of research and development (R&D) in the Philippines.

,shall be granted.

Expert opinions and recommendations by EVP member-agencies such as DOST, DOH, CHED, DepEd, and other relevant government agencies will also be sought to ensure that all NOS applications will undergo a thorough evaluation.


If you have 2 or 3 years more in the J1 visa program, why not make use of this time to be of service to our country through your R&D?


  • If you are a special education teacher, how can you tap the US resources, laws, and guidelines that provide students with special needs the quality of education - strategies and interventions - they deserve - and spill it over to our Philippine educational system?

Think about these questions:

  • What is missing in the Philippines educational system?
  • What issues are not currently being addressed?
  • What is lacking in the special education/math/science/social studies/elementary arena?
  • What needs attention, concerns, or problems that, if given focused through your help and your continued stay in the US, can help augment and improve the quality of the Philippine Education?


  1. Should you be writing to the governor of New Mexico for this particular issue and share your plans and solutions - and come up with a written documentation signed by all constituents or parties involved?
  2. Should you connect and partner with non-profit US-based organizations or Asian American groups here in the US to address these concerns and come up with a solution - in written format with all the data and information to make it happen?
  3. Should you be writing a book in your subject area and share it with the Philippine government - the book that has your data analysis and research with a great need to use US resources for it to be sustainable and current?
  4. Should you tap your school district for this platform?


a. You can do it alone or individually.

b. You can collaborate or be in groups - group with teachers of the same school district, same subject matter, same age groups or same advocacy!

As long as your plans and programs call for it.

As long as you are doing 101% to make it work!


Teachers, if you really want this for your family, and you want to stay with all your heart, then think outside of the box. Show the Philippine government what your MIND got!

My parents always tell me God will not give me anything if not for a purpose. Yes, even in the most trying times, there are lessons to be learned, mission to do, and growth to happen.

Teachers, I believe you are being called to serve. If you take on this challenge, your life will never be the same again.

God bless!



Information about the WAIVER from the visa sponsor:

Related Post:

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much ma'am Gemma for all you've shared ideas regarding waiver in J1 God's perfect time am very much interested in this program.


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