Entering the U.S.

When to Arrive at Brandeis

If you are not already in the U.S., J-1 Exchange Visitors may enter the U.S. no more than 30 days before the program start date as listed on Form DS-2019.

At the Port of Entry

After a complete inspection of the appropriate immigration documents, the immigration official will issue a Form I-94 Arrival/Departure Record to each individual entering the U.S. 

If you are entering the U.S. by air or sea, both of the following should occur:

  1. The CBP officer should stamp your passport, indicating your date of entry and visa status granted (such as J-1 - D/S). Please note, you may not get a stamp, as some U.S. Ports of Entry are discontinuing the use of entry stamps. 

  2. You should be issued an Electronic Form I-94, available on the CBP I-94 official website. Please check this website, make sure your arrival information is correct, and print the record. If you are having trouble locating your record, please see our Tips to Locate and Print Electronic I-94.

If you are entering the U.S. by land, you may also be issued a paper Form I-94, which is a small white card stapled into your passport.

If There Is a Mistake on Your Form I-94 or Passport Stamp

  • For those entering in H-1B status, the stamp in your passport and/or paper or electronic form I-94 should have a date that corresponds to the ending date on the H-1B Approval Notice.
  • For those entering in F or J visa status, there should not be a particular date listed on your passport stamp and/or paper or electronic form I-94, but instead the notation "D/S" standing for "Duration of Status" indicating that the individual is allowed to remain in the U.S. for the duration of the program indicated on the Form I-20 or Form DS-2019.

If the immigration officer does not mark your passport stamp and/or Form I-94 (paper or electronic) correctly, you can request a correction if you are still at the port of entry.

If you do not notice a mistake while you are at the port of entry, please come to the ISSO as soon as possible so that we can advise you on how to receive a correction.