The spouse/partner and dependent children of the F-1 or J-1 student may be eligible for F-2 or J-2 status and may use this status to accompany their family member to the U.S.
The spouse or partner and dependent children (under 21 years of age) of the F-1 or J-1 students are eligible for respective F-2 or J-2 status and may use this status to accompany the F-1 or J-1 student to the U.S. The eligible “spouse” or “partner” in this context is defined as: (1) legal marriage, evidenced by a marriage certificate issued by the place of celebration, (2) common law marriage, evidenced by an official verification or a legal brief verifying full material rights by the place of celebration.
Obtain a Visa Document (I-20) for a Spouse/Partner and/or Dependent(s)
To request an I-20 for your spouse/partner or child, first connect with your OISS adviser for the required funding minimums and to discuss how they will move on to their new F-2 immigration status. When ready, your adviser will create a Student Dependent Request for you to complete in your OISS Connect portal. Be prepared at that time to upload a copy of your dependent(s) passport and evidence of sufficient funds to support their stay.
Once the I-20s are issued, the F-2 family will need to request the F-2 visa from a U.S. Embassy or Consulate (unless they are Canadian citizens) prior to entering the U.S. in F-2 status.
Individuals in F-2 status may not work in the U.S.
F-2 children may only engage in full-time study at the kindergarten through high school (K-12) level. Part-time study is permitted at any level for persons in F-2 status.
Confirm J-2 Status Requirements are Met
Individual DS-2019 for Each Dependent
Each person in J-2 status must have their own DS-2019. With the DS-2019 the J-2 dependent may apply for a J-2 visa at the U.S. Consulate. See the section 'How to Obtain a Visa Document (DS-2019) for a Spouse/Partner and/or Dependent(s)' below for more information.
The J-1 student must also demonstrate sufficient financial resources for the support of each of their J-2 dependents. This support minimum differs from school to school. Please reach out to your OISS adviser for more information.
J-1/J-2 Health Insurance Requirement
All Exchange Visitors (J-1) and their J-2 dependents are required to maintain health and accident insurance coverage during the entire time they participate in an Exchange Visitor program. See the Health Insurance Requirement page for more information.
Obtain a Visa Document (DS-2019) for a Spouse/Partner and/or Dependent(s)
When Your Dependent(s) Will Accompany You to the U.S.
You will receive an email survey from OISS upon your acceptance of your offer of admission (the New Student Survey) that will ask you for the relevant information about any family members accompanying you.
When Your Dependent(s) Will Join You After Your Arrival to the U.S.
- To notify OISS that a spouse, partner, or child will join you after your arrival, first connect with your OISS adviser for the required funding minimums and to discuss how your dependent will move on to their new J-2 immigration status.
- When ready, your adviser will create a Student Dependent Request for you to complete in your OISS Connect portal.
- Be prepared to upload a copy of their passport(s) and evidence of sufficient funds to support their stay (see the 'Funding Requirements' section above) before creating a request for J-2 sponsorship.
J-2 visa holders (the spouses, partners, and dependent children of J-1s) may apply to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) for permission to work in the United States. This work authorization is called an Employment Authorization Document (EAD).