If you wish to bring your spouse or child with you to the U.S. while you complete your studies, you will need to prove that you have adequate financial resources to support them for the entire length of your program. In addition, in order to include them on your I-20, International Student affairs will need a copy of the passport of your spouse and/or child. Please be advised that an I-20 cannot be issued if the proper financial documentation is not proven. To determine the expense for each dependent, please contact International Student Affairs. Unfortunately, an I-20 listing your dependents does not necessarily mean that your dependents will be granted an F-2 visa by the U.S. consulate or embassy. A U.S. consular officer will determine your dependents' ability to be issued an F-2 visa to enter the U.S. Please plan on purchasing dependent health insurance coverage for each dependent that will be traveling with you.
You must receive approval from your J-1 program sponsor in order for your spouse and/or child to accompany you to the U.S. If your sponsor approves your request, you need to prove enough financial resources to cover your dependents. You will also need to purchase dependent health insurance that meets the legal J-1 minimum requirement. It is your program sponsor’s responsibility to create a new Form DS-2019 listing your dependents. Please be advised that issuance of Form DS-2019 with your dependents listed does not guarantee J-2 visa issuance. It is solely up to the U.S. consulate or embassy in your home country to decide if they meet U.S. visa issuance criteria.
If for any reason your dependents are not approved for a F-2 or J-2 visa, please request the reason for the denial in writing. Then contact International Student Affairs as soon as possible. We will try to assist you in any way that we can, however it is the Consul’s decision whether or not to grant a visa. While we can research the situation for you and try to help, there is no guarantee that it will later be approved. Visit the U.S. Department of State website for student visa application information.
*Under U.S. immigration law, only the legal spouse and minor children of the F-1 student or J-1 exchange visitor, qualifies as a dependent and is eligible to apply for a dependent visa and dependent immigration status.