If you are or will be in J-1 status, your legally married spouse and dependent children under age 21 may be eligible for J-2 status to accompany you or follow you separately to the U.S. If you are already in the U.S. and would like to request a Certificate of Eligibility, form DS-2019, for the purpose of inviting family in J-2 status, please follow the process below to complete the Dependent Request eForm and submit it along with the required documents in iHopkins. A new DS-2019 form will be prepared for each of your family members. Funding documentation of $300 per month per dependent for the duration of your current DS-2019 may be required based on your current funding situation.
To Add a J-2 Dependent to your J-1 SEVIS Record
- Gather acceptable documentation for financial support that meets or exceeds the minimum required funding discussed above
- Create legible scanned copies of the passport ID page for each dependent
- Submit the above to OIS via iHopkins
- Go to http://ihopkins.jhu.edu
- Click “Login” under “Active JHED Login”
- Once logged in, click on “J-1 Student Services” in the menu on the left, then click on J-2 Dependent Request (Add Spouse/Children)” e-Form. Submit an e-Form for each dependent you are requesting a DS-2019 for
- You will be required to upload documents as one PDF file
- OIS will review your request and issue the DS-2019s for your dependents within 10 business days of submission
*Please email email@example.com for any iHopkins login or eForm issues
Applying for J-2 Visa Stamp
For accurate and complete details regarding the visa application process and to schedule your dependent’s visa interview please see the U.S. Department of State website. Please be sure to review the website of your specific local U.S. Embassy/Consulate because directions and/or documentation requirements are often country and site specific. You can access the directory of local consulate websites at http://www.usembassy.gov/
Necessary documents for J-2 visa application
- Passport (valid at least six months into the future)
- Certificate of Eligibility for J-2 dependents (DS-2019)
- All applicable visa application forms and fees
- Supporting documentation including copies of the principal J-1 immigration documents, proof of study or program at JHU, financial support documentation, and documentation to establish relationship to the J-1 principal
- Any other documents required by your local U.S. Consulate
Click here to find additional visa processing information on our website.
J-2 Reporting Obligations
- Individuals in J-2 status are required to provide OIS with their email address.
- If a J-2 departs the U.S. before the J-1 principal and has no intention of returning in J-2 status, OIS must be notified in writing so that we can cancel the J-2 SEVIS record. Notify OIS by email: OIS@jhu.edu
Important Things to know for J-2 Dependents
- J-2 is a derivative status of J-1 meaning J-2 status ends when the principal J-1’s program ends.
- The J-2 dependent’s DS-2019 may be extended only if the J-1’s program and DS-2019 is extended.
- J-2 dependents are automatically subject to the 2-year home residency and/or the 12-month bar if the J-1 principal is subject.
- Accompanying spouses and dependents in J-2 status must be covered by health insurance that meets the Department of State requirements for the duration of stay in the U.S.
- J-2 dependents may not remain in the U.S. in absence of the J-1 principal for long periods of time. On average, if the J-1 principal is absent more than 30 days it is considered a break in program activity. The U.S. Department of State advises the J-2 spouse and dependents to accompany the J-1 principal outside the country whenever possible.
- J-2 dependents may not remain in the U.S. longer than the J-1. Once the J-1 has completed their program and left the U.S., the J-2 dependents must depart as well.
- Dependent children age 21 and older are not eligible for J-2 status.
- J-2 dependents must have a valid travel signature on their DS-2019 if they are travelling abroad and returning in J-2 status. The J-1 principal can submit a request through iHopkins for a travel signature on behalf of their dependents.
- J-2 dependents must apply for and receive work authorization from USCIS before engaging in employment.
- The J-2’s eligibility to study and/or work ends when the J-1 principal completes their program. J-2 dependents cannot work/study during the 30-day grace period at the end of the program. They may remain in the U.S., but must depart before the grace period ends.
J-2 Work Authorization
J-2 work authorization allows the holder to work in any job, full-time or part-time, but employment may not extend beyond the end date on their Employment Authorization Document (EAD). J-2 work authorization is obtained from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) through an application process that usually takes 3-4 months for processing. Employment may not begin until the J-2 dependent has received the work permit, referred to as the EAD.
Extension of work authorization is possible, up to the end date of the form DS-2019. Please note that the extension process also takes 3-4 months, so it is important plan ahead if you want to avoid gaps in your employment authorization.
EAD Application Process
To apply for an EAD, mail the items listed below to USCIS. Be sure to keep photocopies of the entire packet for your records. You can download a pdf of J-2 Work Authorization Application Instructions.
- $410 application fee. Your fee must be the correct amount or your application will be returned. Check or money orders must be made payable to “U.S. Department of Homeland Security.” A name and an address must be printed on the check; temporary checks are not allowed.
- I-765 Form Complete the form and don’t forget to sign at the bottom. The code for question 20 is “(C)(5)( )”.
- Photocopy only of both the J-1’s and J-2’s DS-2019 forms
- Photocopy of Passport Biographical Page (including the passport expiration)
- Photocopy of most recent I-94 document
- Brief letter explaining that the work permission is not to support the J-1
To mail your employment application to USCIS: visit https://www.uscis.gov/i-765-addresses, select Foreign Students option, and then select the appropriate Eligibility Category (c)(5). We strongly recommend that you send your application package via courier so that you will be able to track when it is received by USCIS.
Study in J-2 Status
There is a no regulatory restriction on study for J-2 dependents which means they may study part-time or full-time. In the case of children, K-12, study may be required based on the state in which you reside. J-2 dependents may not remain in the U.S. beyond the stay of the principal J-1 in order to continue schooling unless they first obtain the appropriate student visa status.
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