F Dependent Information

F-2 dependents are defined as a spouse or an unmarried minor child (<21 years of age) of an F-1 student.

F-2 dependents:

  • may enter the U.S. with/after the F-1 student, but never before
  • cannot be employed
  • must have Form I-20 each time they travel outside the U.S.
  • cannot be admitted as a full-time degree seeking student(Exception: Elementary, middle school, & high school students)
  • must leave if F-1 student has been outside U.S. >5 months

Inviting an F-2 Dependent

F-1 students may invite a spouse or unmarried children to join them by the providing following document to OIS:

  1. Complete a Student Request Form
  2. Evidence of financial support (bank statement, sponsor letter, etc):
    • $2,500.00 for spouse
    • $2,500.00 for each child
  3. Passport copies for each dependent

Visa Application

OIS will prepare a dependent I-20 marked “for use by dependents”. The dependent(s) will then use the I-20 to apply for an F-2 dependent visa at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate. The following items must also accompany the visa application:

  1. Original or attested true copy of marriage certificate (spouse)
  2. Birth Certificate (for each child)
  3. Financial Documentation
  4. Demonstration of residence abroad
  5. Visa application form DS-160 and DS-157
  6. Passport for each applicant

When the F-2 dependents arrive in the U.S., the F-1 student must update his/her information to reflect the presence of dependents. Bring all I-20 documents and family member passports to OIS (Education 101) to make copies for our records.

If the F-2 dependent changes his or her status successfully to an F-1, the F-1 principal visa holder must have his/her name and dependent expenses removed from the form I-20. To do this, stop by OIS to request this change on your I-20 by completing the Student Request Form.