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I was on J1 visa for the past 3 years and now its expired. I'm already back to my home country and I'm planning to go back to US for other reasons. I had B1/B2 and its still valid and was not cancelled when I applied for J1. Can I use that visa now for travel? Also, can anyone explain how the travelling to US on B1/b2 will affect my home country waiver requirement if I intend to work in US later. In other words, is the home country rule counted as 2 years in total or 2 consecutive years without any travel to US in between?

Thanks.

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Can I use that visa now for travel?

If the B2 visa is unexpired and not cancelled, you can use it for travel.

Also, can anyone explain how the travelling to US on B1/b2 will affect my home country waiver requirement if I intend to work in US later. In other words, is the home country rule counted as 2 years in total or 2 consecutive years without any travel to US in between?

The INA 212(e) two-year home residency requirement is satisfied by a cumulative total of two years of physical presence in the home country. Any time spent outside the home country (whether in the US or elsewhere) is not counted, but when you return to your home country, it resumes counting.

INA 212(e) (8 USC 1182(e)) says:

(e) Educational visitor status; foreign residence requirement; waiver

No person admitted under section 1101(a)(15)(J) of this title or acquiring such status after admission (i) whose participation in the program for which he came to the United States was financed in whole or in part, directly or indirectly, by an agency of the Government of the United States or by the government of the country of his nationality or his last residence, (ii) who at the time of admission or acquisition of status under section 1101(a)(15)(J) of this title was a national or resident of a country which the Director of the United States Information Agency, pursuant to regulations prescribed by him, had designated as clearly requiring the services of persons engaged in the field of specialized knowledge or skill in which the alien was engaged, or (iii) who came to the United States or acquired such status in order to receive graduate medical education or training, shall be eligible to apply for an immigrant visa, or for permanent residence, or for a nonimmigrant visa under section 1101(a)(15)(H) or section 1101(a)(15)(L) of this title until it is established that such person has resided and been physically present in the country of his nationality or his last residence for an aggregate of at least two years following departure from the United States: [...]

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