Community / Frequently Asked Questions


We have prepared this section to solve all the questions regarding who we are, what we do, how the EB-3 and J1 Visa processes work, which are the Host Companies we work with in the US, how to apply and other general inquiries.


We work with expert immigration law firms in PERM, among them are: DelaFuente Law Group, The office of David Yukorsky and Ruby Law Group.

MCC USA is a private recruiting firm and therefore does not have a regulatory body. On the other hand, Immigration Attorneys, who are in charge of the legal process, are regulated by the BAR ASSOCIATION of the United States.

MCC USA is a privately held company and its owners are: Manuel Lievano, current CEO and Juliana Mejia, current VP of Corporate Relations. Juliana Mejía is also an ICCRC certified immigration consultant for immigration processes in Canada.

Using any search tool like Google, you can type ”MCC USA” and you will find articles in the press, webinars with important media, videos of our clients on YouTube, testimonials of our success stories, reviews, our LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube account, with a lot of relevant content for you to do your own research.

As of 2020, MCC USA decided to make its operation 100% remote. Although we have an office in Miami and Bogota, we do not normally attend every day, so you should schedule an appointment with one of our senior consultants to guide you through the process and get to know our spaces physically.

It is key to note that the SPONSOR of the process is not MCC USA. We as a company act as RECRUITER, if our company should cease to operate, the sponsorship process remains intact; since the owner of this process is the SPONSOR, and the law firm that handles the legal process is a third party company.

Before starting the EB-3 process

If you are already in the U.S., you can apply as long as you make sure that you can maintain legal status during the time it takes for the EB-3 program to run. If for some reason your legal status cannot be maintained and you have to return to your home country, you can continue with the EB-3 process to be finalized outside the United States as consular processing.

If you have a J1 Visa you can apply for EB-3, you must make sure to maintain the validity of the J1 Visa during the process and in case it is not possible you can finish the process in your country of origin or a country outside the United States as a consultation process.

Yes, you can apply for EB3 processing if you meet these two conditions; you did not let your I-94 expire before applying for asylum and you have not been summoned to court.

We recommend that individuals do not depart the United States at the beginning of Phase 2 of the EB-3 process, i.e. once the I-140 is filed. The rationale for this recommendation is to avoid the risks of re-entering the United States on a tourist visa when an intent to immigrate to the United States has already been filed.

To work in the United States you must have explicit authorization to do so, working illegally and being paid to perform such work may constitute an inadmissibility that you should be aware of before making the decision to apply for an EB3 process.

If you can start it, what you cannot do is stay in the United States more than the 6 months that the tourist visa authorizes you to stay, Having started EB-3, DOES NOT GIVE YOU A PENDING STATUS TO LIVE IN THE UNITED STATES WHILE YOUR PROCESS IS COMPLETED, so if you only have a tourist visa, you must return to your country and wait for the process to be completed from there, once completed, you become a permanent resident and you can enter and leave whenever you want.

You could make a change to a student visa, to name an example, but we do not provide that service, you must seek it separately. Once your student visa is in process, you can contact us again and at that time we can help you initiate the EB3 process as an adjustment of status from student status or any other status that will allow you to live legally in the United States for the duration of the EB3 process. If for some reason you can no longer maintain your status before EB3 is completed, you must leave the U.S. and your process continues as normal, you would just have to wait for it to be completed by living in your home country for example.

Arriving in the United States after
completing the EB-3 process

We facilitate your localization process by providing you with prior information, developing informative webinars and putting you in contact with external people and companies that can help you throughout the process of finding housing, schools, transportation, banks and key information for living in the United States.

When you are in the United States and subject to fulfilling the work commitment you have with your sponsor, you may travel outside the United States as long as the duration outside the United States does not exceed 180 days.

If you reach an agreement with your Sponsor and your work allows it, you may be able to develop other types of work activities.

The first entry into the United States, once the EB-3 visa is approved, must be with the applicant and the entire family nucleus involved in the process. This in order to file the paperwork with immigration, and start the process of generating the Green Card and SSN (Social Security Number).

The Sponsor may make a decision to revoke your visa. That is why it is very important to comply with the moral commitment to work for one or more years, depending on the commitment with your Sponsor, and avoid situations that may jeopardize your residency status or even the application for citizenship later on.

The pet travel process is completely external to MCC USA, and is not part of the EB-3 Visa process.

About J1 Visa

The J1 Visa is classified as a non-immigrant visa, which necessitates applicants to demonstrate strong connections to their home country. If an applicant is presently in the United States, MCC requires them to return to their home country.

During this period, the applicant is advised to engage in work or attend classes that are relevant to the proposed training. It is important to emphasize that MCC will not provide any documents to individuals who are currently residing in the United States.

To apply for a J1 Visa, applicants must leave the country and initiate the application process from their home country.

Not necessarily. In the United States, overtime is typically earned after working 40 hours per week, and it is commonly compensated at a rate of 1.5 times the base pay.

There are two classifications of positions: “exempt” and “non-exempt.” Employees designated as “exempt” receive a fixed wage for their specific job duties, while “non-exempt” employees are paid based on the actual hours worked. This classification is determined based on the position itself rather than the individual. Consequently, in a J1 program, if a position held by a U.S. employee is considered “exempt,” J1 participants in the same position will also be classified as “exempt.” The same principle applies to “non-exempt” positions.

U.S. organizations are not obligated to provide overtime pay to “exempt” employees. However, participants classified as “non-exempt” are eligible for overtime compensation. The regulations regarding overtime determination may vary between organizations and states.

Yes. There are no regulations that prohibit participants from earning a bonus during their program.

Participants who receive income from a U.S. source are obligated to pay federal, state, and local income taxes. State income tax rates may vary, and it’s important to note that some states do not impose an income tax. The federal income tax is determined based on the wage level and participants can expect to pay approximately 25 percent of their gross salary towards federal income taxes.

The organization will automatically deduct federal and state income taxes from participants’ pay checks. However, participants are not required to pay Social Security and Medicare taxes (FICA) or Federal Unemployment tax (FUTA) as they are not eligible for these benefits.

In general, all J1 Visa holders are considered non-residents for tax purposes. Participants are required to file both a federal income tax return and, if applicable, a state income tax return (depending on the presence of state income tax). These tax returns must be filed by April 15th of each year in which participants earn income in the United States.

For instance, if the program spans from July 3, 2022, to July 2, 2023, participants will need to file tax returns for two years. In this example, the first return must be filed by April 15, 2023, for income earned in 2022, and the second return must be filed by April 15, 2024, for income earned in 2023.

Participants will use either Form 1040NR-EZ or Form 1040NR to file their federal tax return. These forms are typically available after January 1st and can be obtained from Internal Revenue Service (IRS) offices, local public libraries, or the IRS website.

Information regarding forms for filing state income tax returns can be found after January 1st at local public libraries or on the respective state’s tax website.

Participants without a U.S. Social Security number will need to apply for a Social Security card at the local office of the Social Security Administration (SSA).

They should bring their passport, I-94 record, Form DS-2019, and a copy of their birth certificate for identification. The application process may take around one hour, and participants should expect a wait in line. The SSA will make copies of the necessary documents and return the originals. The customer service agent will verify the participant’s arrival information through the SAVE database and issue a receipt.

The Social Security card will be delivered within two to four weeks. If there are delays in record updates, participants will receive a receipt and the SSA will initiate a formal inquiry, which can take four to six weeks.

Participants can be added to their host employer’s payroll using a temporary “dummy number” until they obtain their Social Security number. It is important for participants to provide their actual Social Security number to their host employer as soon as they receive it.

No. The Form DS-2019 provides information about participants’ designated training location. As participants enter the United States for specific on-the-job training at a specific location, it is not possible to change training locations.

If there are significant changes in financial or other conditions with the host employer during the training program, participants should contact Cultural Vistas to explore the possibility of securing training at a different site.

However, as the visa sponsor, only Cultural Vistas has the authority to approve a change in training location. It is crucial to remember that participants are legally authorized to earn a wage solely at the host employer specified on the Form DS-2019.

It is important to emphasize that severe penalties can be imposed on both the employer and the participant if the participant is not legally authorized to earn a wage at the designated employer.

Participants must apply to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) of the Department of Homeland Security to obtain a new I-94 card.

It is crucial to understand that the I-94 card serves as the official proof of legal entry into the United States. Without this document, participants lack evidence of their lawful entry and may face deportation.

To request a replacement card, participants need to complete and submit the I-102 form to USCIS, along with the required fee for a lost I-94 card. Additionally, participants should promptly notify Cultural Vistas about the loss of their I-94 card.

If participants lose their passports, which also contain their J1 Visas, they should promptly contact the nearest embassy or consulate of their country of citizenship in the U.S. to inquire about obtaining a replacement passport.

It is important to note that if participants travel outside the United States after receiving a new passport, they must obtain a new J1 Visa before re-entering the country, as the new passport will not have the visa in it.

If the lost passport contained the I-94 card, participants will need to apply for a replacement I-94 card (refer to above instructions). If the lost passport contained the Form DS-2019, participants would need to obtain a replacement Form DS-2019 from Cultural Vistas.

Participants must contact Cultural Vistas immediately to inform us about the loss of their passport.

Participants can travel outside the United States for up to 30 consecutive days during the training program. Before traveling, participants must send the Form DS-2019 to Cultural Vistas for a signature, which confirms their sponsorship. This signature is valid for one year and helps facilitate their return without questioning at the border.

To re-enter the United States, participants need a valid multiple entry visa in their passport. If they have a single-entry visa or an expired visa, they should contact Cultural Vistas in advance for necessary documentation.

When traveling to Canada or Mexico for less than 30 days, participants who have an I-94 card do not need to surrender it at the border. They can keep the card and show it to the border official upon their return.

Participants should ensure they meet the visa requirements for entering Canada or Mexico, as the J1 Visa is only valid for the United States. While U.S. citizens may not require a visa for travel to Canada or Mexico, participants from other countries should check their home country’s visa requirements for these destinations.

Travel validation signatures are not needed for travel to Canada or Mexico.

It is imperative that Cultural Vistas maintain an accurate, current home address for all participants in the United States. Participants must notify Cultural Vistas of any address changes within 10 business days, or risk losing visa status.

Individuals are permitted by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to stay in the United States for up to 30 days after the end date specified on their DS-2019 (Certificate of Eligibility). It is crucial to adhere to this regulation.

If a participant’s training program concludes before the DS-2019 end date, they should contact Cultural Vistas.

It is important to note that exceeding the authorized stay, even by one day, can result in severe penalties and hinder future visits to the United States.

The J1 Visa is a temporary visa and is issued with the understanding that you do not intend to permanently reside in the U.S.

As part of Cultural Vistas’ sponsorship, both the participant and the host employer are required to sign an obligations and responsibilities form, affirming their commitment to maintaining the participant’s non-immigrant status.

Schools that frequently seek H1B or other visa statuses for their teachers may face limitations in their ability to collaborate with Cultural Vistas in the future.

The J1 Visa is a temporary visa and is issued with the understanding that you do not intend to permanently reside in the U.S.

As part of Cultural Vistas’ sponsorship, both the participant and the host employer are required to sign an obligations and responsibilities form, affirming their commitment to maintaining the participant’s non-immigrant status.

Schools that frequently seek H1B or other visa statuses for their teachers may face limitations in their ability to collaborate with Cultural Vistas in the future.

No. Participants who have successfully completed an internship program and no longer meet the selection criteria for internship programs must reside outside of the United States for two years before they can apply for a training position.

The maximum duration permitted for on-the-job training on the J1 Visa is 18 months, while for the J1 Intern Visa, it is 12 months.

If a participant is engaged in a six-month training program and both the participant and the host employer deem it beneficial to extend the program for an additional 12 months, MCC can facilitate the program extension.

Please be aware that MCC charges a fee for program extensions and requires the submission of a training plan for the extended period.

The approval process for extensions may take approximately 2-3 weeks, so it is advisable to plan and apply for an extension before the original program end date. To request an extension, please contact MCC via email at

An exchange visitor is subject to the two‐year home country physical presence requirement under the following conditions:

Your J1 Visa program is funded in whole or in part directly or indirectly by the U.S. government or the government of your nationality or last residence.

You are a national or permanent resident of a country which has deemed your field of specialized knowledge or skill necessary to the development of the country, as shown on the Exchange Visitor Skills List.

Dependents must be spouses or children of the J1 Visa holder.
Common law marriages are not recognized and are not eligible for J2 Dependent Visas.
The age limit for dependents is 21.

Yes. Upon arrival in the United States, a J2 Visa dependent spouse can apply for work authorization through USCIS (U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services) under Category 274a.12(c).

The application requires demonstrating financial independence from the J1 Visa participant. Processing times vary, typically taking at least 60 days.

The application is submitted on Form I-765 with the required fee and a statement of family expenses. If approved, work authorization is valid until the J1 Visa holder’s authorized stay ends.

J2 dependents are subject to Social Security, federal unemployment, and income taxes. MCC is not involved in the J2 dependent spouse’s work authorization application.