Frequently Asked Questions 

Please note that this list is not intended as a substitute for counseling. Any topics that are not covered here should be discussed with a counselor.

Email inquiries can be directed to dcissj1unit@saonet.ucla.edu

For in person appointments, please call the Dashew Center at 310.825.1681; we cannot process appointment requests via email. 


I want to come to UCLA as a J-1 researcher, how do I apply?

You must contact the UCLA Department you are interested in visiting. The sponsoring department will submit the DS-2019 Request Form to DCISS. Upon approval from the Department of Homeland Security, the DS-2019 will be processed and mailed to you by your department. UCLA School of Medicine Visa and Licensing Office processes DS-2019 requests for visitors to the School of Medicine and other affiliated hospitals. 

I am a student in my home country and want to come to UCLA as a researcher, how do I apply?

If you are a graduate student, your sponsoring UCLA department needs to contact the Graduate Division regarding the application, requirements, and fees. If you are an undergraduate student, your sponsoring UCLA department must contact the Undergraduate Research Center regarding the application and requirements. Once registered, your sponsoring UCLA department will need to contact DCISS to begin the J-1 DS-2019 application process.

After my arrival at UCLA, how soon must I check-in at DCISS?

It is mandatory that you check in with DCISS as soon as possible after your arrival, but no later than 25 days after the start date listed on your DS-2019. If you fail to report to our office within the 25-day time period, your DS-2019 form will be voided automatically by the US Homeland Security Department making your stay in the U.S. illegal.

How can I find housing?

DCISS does not provide housing assistance, but UCLA Community Housing Office or our corporate sponsor Zuma Housing can provide you with housing options. Eligibility for university housing is dependent on your UCLA appointment title. Please contact your UCLA academic department for more information.

How do I obtain a BruinCard (UCLA ID)?

Your academic department is responsible for assisting you with the BruinCard process. They will need to submit an online request form to BruinCard services. Bruincard eligibility will be dependent on your appointment title and program duration. 

My spouse and children do not plan to come with me to the U.S. Can they join me later?

Your spouse and children can join you on J-2 visa status at any time during your stay in the U.S. You do not need to request a DS-2019 form at the same time you are getting one. They can request a DS-2019 form to apply for the J-2 visa when they are ready to visit you.

How do I make an appointment?

Appointments can be made by calling our front desk at (310)-825-1681 (or 51681 from a campus phone). Please be aware that during peak periods, the waiting time for an appointment can be up to 2 weeks. 

What services need an appointment?

Appointments with a counselor are required for the following: Any detailed questions regarding your visa status, home residency requirement, change of status or other out-of-the-ordinary requests, transfers and work permits/academic training. 

What services do NOT need an appointment?

Paperwork for the following can be dropped off at the DCISS front desk: Requests for a DS-2019 (new program or extension), travel validation, J-2 dependent DS-2019, or off-campus scholar employment.

I have some tax questions..

DCISS is not able to assist with tax advice or filing in any way. However, each year – normally in the months of February, March and April – DCISS coordinates workshops with campus and outside tax professionals to assist UCLA scholars and students with the preparation of non-resident tax returns. Once available, the dates will be announced by email as well as on this website. 

You will also find Foreign Students & Workers tax information on the UCLA Corporate Financial Services website. Tax preparation assistance information can also be found on their website here

Can I buy Health Insurance from a carrier in my country?

As long as the coverage meets J-1 visa regulations. Coverage requirements are listed at UCLA’s affiliated insurance agency website: http://www.garnett-powers.com/vs/ucla/. Through the waiver process, Garnett-Powers will review your purchased plan to determine if it meets the J-1 visa regulations.