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J1 waiver/ NORI application is a three stage process and is available only to J1
visa holders. The Indian consulates only handle Stage I and Stage III. The applicants have to handle Stage II themselves.


The Ministry of Human Resources Development has launched a new portal – http://nori.ac.in for inviting online application for NORI. The online application on the portal has commenced from 27th February 2016. The Ministry will continue receiving physical form of application for the next 90 days from commencement of the new website. Post 90 days, physical application will not be accepted for the purpose

Fee Structure:

Stage 1: $ 63 (Chicago/New York/Atlanta); $ 69 (San Francisco/Houston)

Stage 2: Un-accounted (it depends on your respective state secretariat honesty).

Stage 3a: $ 28 (Chicago/San Francisco/Houston); $ 23 (New York/Atlanta)

If you want to receive the attested documents back through mail, either send a traceable pre-paid return mailing envelope (USPS ‘Express Mail’ or FEDEX etc.) or enclose an additional money order/cashier’s check for $ 20 (twenty) payable to Consulate General of India – Chicago/New York/San Francisco/Houston/Atlanta.

Fees should be paid through Money order or Cashiers’ cheque drawn in favor of the ‘Consulate General of India, Chicago/New York/San Francisco/Houston/Atlanta.’ Personal cheques, debit cards, credit cards or other banking instruments are not accepted.

Stage 3b: $ 120

Please send a cashier’s check or money order in U.S. currency drawn on a U.S. bank, made payable to THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE. Include your name, date and place of birth on whatever form of payment you submit. DO NOT SUBMIT MORE THAN ONE APPLICATION FEE PER PERSON:

Applying by Mail:

Mailing Addresses (select as per jurisdiction area):

Consulate General of India, Chicago
Misc. – NORI
455 North Cityfront Plaza Dr.
NBC Tower, Suite 850
Chicago, IL 60611

Consulate General of India
(Consular Wing)
No. 3 East, 64 Street,
New York 10065

Miscellaneous Cell
Consulate General of India,
540 Arguello Boulevard;
San Francisco CA 94118

Consulate General of India, Atlanta
5549 Glenridge Drive NE,
Atlanta, GA-30342

Consulate General of India

4300 Scotland st

Houston, TX-77007


Phone No: 713-626-2148/2149




  • Miscellaneous Services Form – Download the Miscellaneous Application form and complete the application form.

Attach the following documents with the application form:

  • Current Indian passport in original and photocopy of the first page and last page of the passports.
  • Proof of your US Visa Status:(copy of any one of the following)
    • DS 2019
    • Photocopy of the page containing visa on passport (H1B, H4 etc) and the copy of I-94
    • Clear Photocopy of Green Card
    • Employment Authorization Document (Work Permit)
    • I-797, I-140 or I-20 (If approval copy of these notices are pending, also attach a handwritten note detailing the efforts being taken to regularize status)
  • Proof of current US residence address: (copy of any one of the following)
    • U.S Driving license.
    • PG&E, Water or landline telephone bill displaying applicant’s address
    • House Lease Agreement
    • State Identification Card

NOTE: Bank/credit card/mobile phone statements are not accepted as residence proof

  • Submit all 4 original sets (full set includes one NORI form plus one affidavit: Please select from below as appropriate).

Chicago jurisdiction

New York jurisdiction

San Francisco jurisdiction

Houston jurisdiction (Affidavit)Houston jurisdiction (Biodata)

Atlanta jurisdiction (Affidavit)Houston jurisdiction (Biodata)

NOTE: Notarization is required if not submitting in person. In case the Consulate receives applications with incomplete documentation, the same will be returned unprocessed.


Send all the above documents and attachments either by post to your jurisdiction area or submit in person. No appointment is needed for personal submission at any of the above consulate. 


On receipt of attested forms from the Consulate General of India, send one original set (set includes)

to each of the following:

  1. The Regional Passport Office (where your passport was issued initially), in India.
    2. The Home Department of State in India you belong to (usually to the visa section of the secretariat of applicant’s home state).
    3.   The Department of Education, Ministry of Human Resource Development, External Scholarship Division, 2nd Floor , Wing -6, West Block 1, R.K.Puram , Delhi – 110066 (Not applicable to practicing doctors).


Please note that it is applicant’s responsibility to obtain clearances from the offices in India. Consulate will not pursue this on their behalf. 

Applicants in most cases receive waiver from HRD and regional passport office within 1-2 months. Waiver from passport office may come via email (please clearly mention your email ID in cover letter/document). 

Applicant needs to be really on top of procedure for obtaining waiver from home department of state. Procedure from case study from UP is as follows:

  1. If possible get your waiver application to Home Department of State, submitted personally by friend/family and ask for a receipt. 
  2. Once received, the application is sent to the applicant’s hometown for verification from family. Be prepared to shell out some bucks (I know it’s not fair but its reality). Applicants legal guardians are required to submit a ‘no objection affidavit’, prepared by an attorney (ask them make at least 3 copies).
  3. Normally, two verification may be required, one by your local police department and another from magistrate office.
  4. Once both verification is conducted, the ‘no objection’ is sent to the Home Department of State, Secretariat.
  5. Upon receiving ‘no objection’ from legal guardian, secretariat processes a letter which is sent to applicants US consulate and a copy to the applicant.


On receipt of waiver clearance from all three offices mentioned in Stage II, applicants are supposed to prepare two separate packages:


  • Fill DS3035 form with Department of State
  • It will generate a PDF package, which will include two sets of documents. One set, applicants have to send to DOS along with required documents:
    • passport (Copy of the data page of the exchange visitor’s current passport containing name and birth date)
    • Copies of all DS2019 issued
    • Copy of stamped VISA on passport
    • I-94
    • Statement of reason to receive a waiver of the two-year home country requirement (Statement of reason_Template)
    • Two self-addressed, stamped envelopes.
    • Cashier check of $120 (as mentioned above in Stage 3b under Fee Structure).

Send the whole package with DS3035 and all supporting documents to (ONLY USPS WILL WORK HERE AS OTHER COURIER SERVICES DON’T DELIVER TO P.O. BOX)

U.S. Department of State
Waiver Review Division
P.O. Box 952137
St. Louis, MO 63195-2137


Prepare another package containing,

  • a copy of the all the three clearances from India
  • the CASE NUMBER  (provided after filling DS3035)
  • Third party barcode page created after filling DS3030 form.
  • Cashier check of $28 (as mentioned above in Stage 3a under Fee Structure).
  • If you want to receive the attested documents back through mail, either send a traceable prepaid return mailing envelope (USPS ‘Express Mail’ or FEDEX etc.) or enclose a money order/cashier’s check for $20 (twenty) payable to Consulate General of India – Chicago/New York/San Francisco/Houston/Atlanta.

Send this package 2 to your respective consulate with clearly mentioned CASE NUMBER on envelope.

 What to expect after sending out packages from step 3?

  1. Applicant will receive a copy of an attested document (recommendation for waiver) from his/her consulate, addressed to Indian Embassy in Washington (ONLY IF APPLICANT HAVE OPTED TO RECEIVE ATTESTED DOCUMENTS AND HAVE SENT A PREPAID ENVELOP/ CASHIER CHECK).
  2. Following which you can check status of your waiver from DOS here WAIVER STATUS using case number from ‘form DS3035’.
  3. Mostly applicant will see their status as ‘PENDING’.
  4. The review process only starts if the status page shows that all the following documents are received:
    1. No objection statement from Indian Embassy
    2. Fee
    3. Form DS-3035
    4. Form DS-2019
    5. Passport Data Page
    6. Statement of Reason
  5. It may take 3-6 weeks, following which a recommendation will be sent to USCIS and applicant’s status will change to ‘FAVORABLE RECOMMENDATION’ (in most cases).
  6. Within 1-2 week after step 4, applicant would receive a ‘Form I-797C Notice of Action’ from USCIS.
  7. In most cases, after a week or may be two, applicant would receive an official water-marked ‘Form I-797 Approval Notice’ from USCIS.




Originally published at https://sciash.wordpress.com/2016/03/20/j1-waiver-step-by-step-guide


About the author: In his website (http://www.ashootoshtripathi.com), Ashootosh says, “I am a scientist with specialization in drug discovery, microbial genetics and biosynthetic chemistry at University of Michigan. I believe humans and microbes share planet earth from completely different perspective but our existence today is as much dependent on them as they pose threat to our race. According to recent reports, pathogenic (disease causing) microbes were accounted as one of the top ten causes of deaths in USA. Interestingly, microbes also express themselves as producer of majority of drugs ranging from antibiotic to anticancer consumed all over the world and hence acting as a saviour.”


  1. I must say, it is a very well written post. Great job Ashootosh!!
    I followed this to file for the Step III in waiver process.
    I sent out the document package to DOS (Received today, Feb 27 2017) and handed the docs to CGI (today, Feb 27 2017) as well. I will receive a copy of the waiver certificate from the CGI today evening itself (Feb 27 2017). I wished to know if now the CGI would now send the waiver certificate to the Embassy or directly to the DOS?
    Would you may be have a clue as to the time period between sending docs to DOS and getting the favorable recommendation for waiver from them, can I get my current DS2019 extended?

  2. Hello Ashootosh, thanks for the post on NORI, I had a question about my home state. I got married to a UP guy so will his place in UP be my Home Department of State?
    As you mentioned “Once received, the application is sent to the applicant’s hometown for verification from family”. Here, my hometown means my husband’s hometown in UP, right ? Does Applicants legal guardians mean my in-laws ? Could you please share a sample for the ‘no objection affidavit’, to be prepared by their attorney. Thank you so much.

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