Office of International Programs

Bringing Family

Will you be bringing family with you to USM? If so, we need to be sure we know this early in the application process so that we can plan accordingly and help to prepare the necessary visa documents.

Who Can Qualify as a Dependent?

 F-1 and J-1 dependents are defined as a spouse of opposite gender and/or an unmarried child under the age of 21.

Due to current federal immigration law, same-sex partners/spouses of F1/J1 students are not eligible for dependent status.

Can I Bring a Parent, Housekeeper or Child Care Provider as a Dependent?

No. They would need to come as tourists which will limit the amount of time they may remain with you in the US.

Will I Need to Show More Money if I Want to Bring Dependents?

Yes, you will need to provide proof of additional funding to support your dependents while they are here.

How Much?

Visiting Scholars must show access to $800 per month for the first dependent and $400 per month for each additional dependent.

What Kind of Information Do You Need for Each Dependent?

In order for us to process immigration documents for a spouse or children we need the following pieces of information for each dependent:

  • Family name in passport
  • Given name in passport
  • City of Birth
  • Country of Birth
  • Country of Citizenship
  • Date of Birth (mm/dd/yyyy)
  • Readable copy of passport biographical page
  • Relationship to you: spouse or child
  • Proof of marriage in original language with an English translation if not already in English
  • Birth certificate or adoption certificate listing you as the parent/legal guardian of child

F-2 dependent restrictions: 

  1. Cannot work.
  2. May enter the US with or after the F-1 student, but not before.
  3. Must have their I-20 form each time they travel outside the US.
  4. Cannot be admitted or enrolled as a full time degree seeking student. Only classes that are recreational in nature are allowed. This means part-time study for personal interest, such as cooking or tennis. (A child in F-2 status may attend K-12 schools. They must apply for an F-1 to enroll in college)
  5. Can only remain on F-2 status as long as the F-1 maintains his/her status.

J-2 dependent restrictions:

  1. May enter the US with or after the J-1 student/scholar but not before.
  2. J-2's can apply for work permission from USCS as long as the employment is not for the purpose of supporting the J-1.
  3. Must have their DS-2019 form each time they travel outside the US.
  4. May study full or part time.
  5. Can only remain in J-2 status as long as the J-1 maintains his/her status.

Dependents will need to apply for an F-2/J-2 visa at a US consulate/embassy abroad before entering the US. They will NOT need to pay the SEVIS fee. 

 If you have any additional questions about bringing your family with you to USM please ask. Thank you!