Dependents of J-1 Students

Many J-1 exchange students come to the United States with their families. The J-2 visa is for a dependent spouse or an unmarried child who is under the age of 21. J-2 status enables dependents to stay in the United States during the J-1 students’s program.

Funding Documentation

J-1 students must prove that they have financial support to fund their dependents in J-2 status. You should be prepared to document $8400 for your first dependent and $5075 for each subsequent dependent.

A J-1 student bringing 3 family members, for example, would need to show $18,550 in addition to the J-1 student's program estimate.

Requesting J-2 Dependent Documents

Dependent documents can be requested in two ways: as part of the admissions process or once the J-1 student has arrived to the US. If you plan to bring your family with you at the beginning of your study, you should submit your dependent documents and funding during your admission process.

If you plan to bring your dependents to the United States after you have already begun your study, you will need to request documents from your Atlas account. To request documents for your dependent complete the Dependent Document Request located in your Atlas J-1 Student Services menu. Complete this eForm with your Dependent’s information. You will need to attach copies of new financial documentation, your dependent’s passport ID page, and proof of your relationship (marriage or birth certificate).

Once this is received by OIA, we will begin processing your request for documents and notify you when they are ready for pickup.

Other topics of interest to J-2 Dependents:

  • Travel Outside the United States

    Dependents follow the same travel procedures as students.

    See J-1 Travel guidance »

  • Enrollment in IUI Courses

    J-2 dependents can enroll in IUI courses as part-time or full-time students.

    School-age children (up to 18) can study in primary and high school in the United States.

  • Work authorization

    J-2 Dependents are eligible to apply for work authorization in the United States. Work authorization can only be granted by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS). Contact us for more detailed information.

  • Dependent Remaining Here While J-1 Travels

    A J-1 student must maintain his or her status in order for the J-2 dependent to stay in the United States. If the J-1 student is out of the country for a significant period of time, this might affect the J-2’s ability to remain in the United States. Contact us for help with your specific situation.