Dependent Work Permission
Inviting Friends and Family to the U.S.

Dependent Visas

If you are a UConn student or exchange visitor and you would like to have your qualifying family members accompany you to the U.S. while you pursue your program, you can request an I-20 or DS-2019 form for F-2 or J-2 status. Please read the eligibility requirements below, and when ready, use the online request form to request your I-20 or DS-2019 form for F-2 or J-2 status. Please note: ISSS cannot issue your dependent I-20 or DS-2019 for any spouse before the legal marriage takes place.


F-1/J-1 UConn Students:

J-1 Visiting Scholars:
Log in to the Scholar/Employee Portal with email and password
(Do NOT use UConn NetID)
Scholar/Employee Portal Login
Click on Requests
Click on Add New Dependent

Who qualifies for F-2 or J-2 status?

  1. A spouse (legally recognized marital union)
  2. Child(ren) who are under 21 years old and unmarried
  3. The purpose of the visit is to accompany the principal visa holder (F-1/J-1) in the U.S. while pursuing their program

Minimum Funding Required to Bring Family Members to The U.S.

If you wish to have your family members accompany you in dependent status (F-2/J-2) in the U.S., you must show adequate funds based on the following guidelines.  Please be advised that if your most current Form I-20/DS-2019 was issued more than one academic year prior, you need to show not only funds for your dependents to be added, but also the most current funds for yourself.

F-1/J-1 Students – per 12 month period

Accompanying Dependent – Spouse Additional $7,305
Accompanying Dependent – Each Child Additional $5,450

J-1 Visiting Scholars/Student Interns – per month

Individual Visiting Scholar $2,125
Visiting Scholar + Spouse $3,500
Each Accompanying Dependent Child Additional $700

NOTE: Required funding amounts are estimated based on minimum living costs, not reflecting individuals’ spending habits or emergency expenses.

Required Documents for Your Request

Please provide International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) with the following information:

  1. ISSS 925 Request to Add Dependent Form (link above for F-1/J-1 Students) or Add Dependent Request in Scholar Employee Portal.
    • J-1 Visiting Scholars: Log in to UConn Scholar/Employee Portal with email and password.  Do NOT use NetID and password.
    • Click on Requests.  Click on Add New Dependent.
  2. Current official financial documents (e.g. bank statements).  Funds need to meet the minimum requirements noted in the table above. Your dependent will also need to have the official bank statement(s) when they go to the Embassy to apply for their visa.
  3. Photocopies of dependents’ passports

Bank statements must:

  • be no more than 3 months old.
  •  be in English
  • be on financial institute’s letterhead (or must show formal identification of the financial institute, e.g. a print-out of online account management page).
  • have fund type of immediately available liquid funds (e.g. stock, investment, 401(k)/retirement plan, real estate, income verification, etc are NOT acceptable).
  • have principal or spouse as a bank account holder.

Dependent Work Permission

F-2 dependents may not work while in the United States. We also strongly discourage F-2 dependents from volunteering in labs at the University.

J-2 visa holders may apply to USCIS for an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. The EAD is a work permit card valid for certain dates. The J-2 visa holder may not apply for employment authorization for the purpose of financially supporting the J-1 visa holder. This application does not require prior authorization from ISSS. To apply for an EAD, the J-2 visa holder should submit the following documents to USCIS:

-Complete Form I-765. Use Eligibility Category (C)(5)( ).

-2 recent passport style photos (taken within last 30 days)

-Filing fee- $410 USD paid by check or money order to U.S. Department of Homeland Security

-Copy of the current DS-2019 for the J-1 and the J-2 visa holders

-Print outs or copies of the Form I-94 for the J-1 and J-2 visa holders

-Letter from the J-2 dependent stating why the employment is requested. This letter should state how the J-1 visa holder is supporting him/herself and confirms that the income from the employment will not be used to support the J-1 visa holder.

-Copy of the J-1 visa holder’s financial support documentation

– Copy of the marriage or birth certificate to document the relationship between the J-1/J-2 visa holder

Send all forms to the USCIS Dallas Lockbox at:

P.O. Box 660867
Dallas, TX 75266

Inviting Friends or Family to the U.S.

If your family/friends wish to visit you in the U.S., they may need to apply for a visitor visa, unless their country of citizenship is listed as a Visa Waiver Program (VWP) participant.  In preparation for their visa application and interview, your family/friends will need to prove WHY they are coming to the U.S., WHAT they will be doing here, WHERE they are going in the U.S., WHEN they will be in the U.S. and WHEN they will return to their home country and, lastly, HOW they will support themselves while they are in the U.S.
If your family/friends need a visitor visa, they need to thoroughly read the instructions for visitor visa applications. These instructions can be found on the website of the U.S. embassy/consulate where they will apply for the visa.  The consulate website should list what documents the applicants must prepare and present in their application.  This is a personal application in which applicants must demonstrate their eligibility through a visa interview.
The following information provides additional tips for visitor visa applications.  If your family/friends are from a VWP participating country, this information is still applicable to them as they may be questioned at the port of entry.

Invitation Letter

Your family/friends may bring a letter from you explaining who you are and what you are doing in the U.S. and that you want to invite them to visit for your graduation (and/or vacation, tour, etc.).  Your letter should list the dates and locations that your family/friends will visit in the U.S. You should be as specific as possible. Include your name, date of birth, SEVIS ID# (if applicable) and address in the U.S.   If your family will stay with you, mention this in your letter or include the name and address of the hotel where they will stay.

Additionally, ISSS can provide an optional status verification letter request to UCONN sponsored F/J visa holders in support of a friend/family member’s visa application process and upcoming visit to UCONN.  Please provide specific details for your request in the space provided, and allow up to 2 weeks processing time for your request.

WHY are your family/friends coming to the U.S. and WHAT will they be doing?
If coming to your graduation they should show proof of this. For example: A copy of your I-20, your full-time enrollment verification and/or a letter from your academic advisor confirming that you are completing your degree this spring/fall, copies of commencement ceremony tickets or invitations, etc.  In addition, the UConn Commencement & Convocation webpage provides information on upcoming convocation ceremonies. Your family/friends may present a print-out from this website to prove that there are graduation ceremonies being held during the time that they will be visiting UConn. If they are coming for a conference or special event, they should bring proof of this instead (or as well).

WHERE are they visiting in the U.S.?
This could be hotel reservations in CT, printed out information from places they plan to visit, and/or reservation confirmations from any special tours or events they will visit.

WHEN will they arrive in the U.S. and WHEN will they return to their home country?
The best way to prove this is with plane tickets that they have or are planning to purchase or a flight itinerary to prove they will not stay in the U.S. forever.  Remember that plane tickets should not be purchased until the visa is granted.  If your family/friends have a job, they should bring a letter from their employer verifying employment and that they will take a vacation and will return to work on XXXXX date.  If your family/friends are in school, they could bring documents from the school to show they will return to their home country to resume enrollment and continue their classes.

HOW will they support themselves while they are in the U.S.?
A bank statement from your family/friends should be available to show that they have the funds to travel in the U.S., or letters from their employers to show that they are working and earning a salary.