Minimum Funding Requirements for Scholars in J-1 Exchange Visitor Status

In order for the ISSO to issue a DS-2019, scholars must demonstrate financial support for the full period of the requested academic appointment.  Scholars who will not be receiving a salary from BU and/or those who may need to to provide additional funding verification for accompanying family members, should review the minimums and submit appropriate documentation for funding verification.

Note that the amounts listed below DO NOT apply to Postdoctoral Appointments or to other research positions that require a different minimum based on Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) guidance and/or standard institutional postdoctoral minimum salaries.

BU salary, per diem, stipends, grants and other non-salary funding should be reflected in the appointment letter and on page 3 of Form B, Scholar Information.

Funding Requirement Figures for Scholars*

Per Month Per Year
Scholar only $ 2,553 $ 30,636
Scholar plus first dependent (spouse or child) $ 3,886 $ 46,632
Scholar plus two dependents $ 4,494 $ 53,928
Scholar plus three dependents $ 4,829 $ 57,948
For each additional dependent beyond three, add $ 334 $ 4,008

*Estimates are based on the Board of Trustees’ Estimate of Academic and Living Expenses and the annual cost for health insurance coverage for BU employee; actual costs may be higher depending on lifestyle. Funding requirements are subject to change at any time.

Acceptable funding sources & documentation

Funding from sources other than BU (private sponsor, your government, scholarship counsel, personal funds, etc.) can be considered to meet the minimum requirements. In cases where the documentation reflects a range in funding, the ISSO will use the lowest figure in the range when evaluating sufficient financial support.  More than one source of non-BU funding can be submitted to meet the minimum requirements.

  • Documentation should be in English or accompanied by an English translation
  • The currency must be clearly noted so that the appropriate current exchange rate can be applied
  • For verification of personal funds:
    • Submit an official bank letter, bank statement or credit reference stating the availability of funding to support minimum funding requirements
    • If your will be funded by a family member, include an original letter of sponsorship indicating willingness and ability to support you and confirming the relationship to you along with the official bank letter, bank statement or credit reference.

Original documentation may be required in some cases.  In addition, note that originals must also be provided at the Consulate when you are requesting a J-1 visa;

Host departments should NOT use these minimums as a standard to calculate salary. Researchers, faculty members and other paid positions should be awarded a salary that meets department and university equity standards and is commensurate with the scholar’s related experience.