To request an extension of your J-1 Status up to the maximum period allowed under the regulations, you must initiate your request through your department. The extension process (including obtaining a new DS-2019) must be completed two months before the end date as noted on your current DS-2019 Form.
If your stay is not supported by UC Merced funding, you will need to provide OIA proof of funds (i.e., external grant award letter, personal bank statement, etc.). Salary support must meet the minimum established for J-1 Scholars which is set at a minimum of $1,800/month for an individual and an additional $500/month for an accompanying spouse and $300/month for each accompanying child.
Obtaining a New DS-2019
If a request for an extension is made with all relevant documentation, OIA will prepare a new DS-2019 reflecting the extended period. That document legally extends your J-1 visit as long as you remain in the U.S. If you have a spouse or child(ren) in J-2 status, their stays will also be extended.
Should you travel outside the U.S. during this new period of valid J-1 status (other than visits of less than 30 days to Canada or Mexico and adjacent territories), you must have a valid J-1 visa in your passport. If your current J-1 visa has expired, you will use the new DS-2019 to apply for a new J-1 visa at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate outside the U.S.
When you apply for a J-1 extension, you do not need to pay the SEVIS fee again.
Maintaining Health Insurance: In extending your J-1 stay you must also be certain to extend your health insurance coverage. Failure to do so will result in the termination of your J-1 Status.