International students in F-1 or J-1 status may be eligible to bring their spouse and children (21 and under) to the United States. For complete instructions on requesting immigration forms for F-1/J-1 dependents, send an email to:
F1 dependent - firstname.lastname@example.org
J1 dependent - email@example.com
Children who reach the age of 21 and are still in F1 or J1 status will have their status terminated and must apply for their own status.
F-1 students with dependents are not required to carry health insurance on their dependents but because of the high cost of health care in the U.S. insurance for dependents is highly recommended.
J-1 Visa holders and their dependents are required to have health insurance.
Dependents on F-2 visas are prohibited from working on or off campus by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) regulations.
Dependents of J-1 Visa Holders- spouse and children are entitled to employment authorization; however, their income may not be used to support the J-1. To apply for employment authorization as a J-2 nonimmigrant, your spouse or child would file Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization available on the USCIS web site.
F2 dependents may study K-12 in the US. Adult F2 dependents who wish to enter a degree program are limited to a less than full time status of enrollment. F2's who wish to study full time in a degree program should apply for a change of status to F1 or exit the country to apply for the F1 Visa and then return. If the primary F1 should leave the country then the F2 must change to an F1 Visa to remain in legal immigration status in the US.
J-2 dependents may study in the United States. If the J-1 should depart the US the J-2 should apply for a change of status to continue study or exit the US and apply for the F1 Visa and then return.
Public Assistance Benefits
Dependents of F-1 or J-1 students are not eligible for public assistance programs such as medical services or insurance provided to low-income U.S. citizens or permanent residents. Accepting such benefits could result in deportation and forced repayment of fees.