Spouse and Family Visas

1. F-2/J-2 Dependent Guidance

Only a legal spouse and unmarried minor children (under 21 years of age) of the F-1 and J-1 Princeton sponsored students may be eligible for F-2 or J-2 visas to accompany the student to the United States or to follow and join the student at a later date. Please note:

  • F-2 and J-2 dependents may remain in the U.S. as long as the F-1 and J-1 student is enrolled as a full-time student at Princeton or otherwise maintains status (for example, during Optional Practical Training and Academic Training).
  • It is not legitimate for F-2 and J-2 dependents to remain in the U.S. while the F-1 or J-1 student is absent from the country for any significant period of time. If this ever becomes a concern, an F-1 or J-1 student should make an appointment with an international student advisor at the Davis IC.
  • F-2 spouse and children may not work in the U.S.
  • F-2 spouses may not engage in full-time study. They are permitted to enroll in study at a SEVP-certified school so long as any study remains less than a full course of study.
  • F-2 and J-2 children may only engage in full-time study if the study is an elementary or secondary school (kindergarten through twelfth grade).
  • J-2 spouse may apply for a work permission from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) as long as the employment is not for the purpose of supporting the J-1 spouse. Income from the J-2's employment may be used to support the family's recreational and cultural activities, travel, etc. The J-2 may not begin employment before receiving employment authorization from USCIS. The J-2 employment allows any employment.
  • J-2 spouse may engage in full or part-time study.
2. Application for F2/J2 Visa Certificate (I-20/DS-2019)

To request a Form I-20 (for F-2 dependents) or a Form DS-2019 (for J-2 dependents), please read carefully all instructions and submit all required documentation to Davis IC via DocuportPlease allow 5 business days for processing.

Please note that only a legal spouse and/or unmarried child under the age 21 of F-1/J-1 students are eligible for dependent F-2/J-2 visas.

2021-2022 Financial Requirements for graduate students and their dependents

NOTE: Students on post-graduation OPT (F-1 students) and Academic Training (J-1 students) are not required to submit proof of funding. They are only required to submit the F-2/J-2 Dependent Information Form

International graduate students are required to document funding as listed below. This total is based on the tuition, fees and the estimated living expenses for twelve months (for Ph.D. students) or ten months (for Masters students) as determined by the Graduate School.

The breakdown of expenses is as follows:

Tuition and Fees (12 months)


Living Expenses (student alone)




Living Expenses (spouse)


Living Expenses (1st child)


Living expense (each subsequent child)



Tuition and Fees (10 months)


Living Expenses (student alone)




Living Expenses (spouse)


Living Expenses (1st child)


Living expenses (each subsequent child)


Please submit the following items to the Davis International Center through DocuPort:

1. F-2/J-2 Dependent Information Form

2. Copy of your most recent Financial Support Letter from the Graduate School or, if you are a first year student, a copy of your Admission Reply form. If you are receiving funding from Princeton University, we will count those funds towards the total that we must see.

3. Personal bank statements in English and in U.S. dollars. The Davis IC reserves the right to request original paper bank statements In cases when a bank statement is not readable, clear etc. If/when that happens, we will let you know. 

If a sponsor will be supporting you, please submit an letter from the sponsor outlining the support AND documentation of the source of support (for example, a bank statement showing adequate funds, a letter from a bank indicating that the account holder has enough funds in the bank to support you, a letter from the employer indicating adequate salary, etc.).

4. Copy of the bio page from dependent's passport

Please note that F-2 dependents are not eligible for employment or full-time/part-time studies in the United States. J-2 dependents may apply for employment authorization to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). For further information visit J-2 Work Authorization.

5. Copy of marriage certificate (for spouses)

If the marriage certificate is not in English, you will also need to provide a translation.

3. Visa Applications Based on Same-Sex Marriage

U.S. Embassies/Consulates adjudicate visa applications that are based on a same-sex marriage in the same way that they adjudicate applications for opposite gender spouses. Please reference the specific guidance on the visa category for which you are applying for more details on documentation required for derivative spouses. For more information, please see the Department of State U.S. Visas for Same-Sex Spouses FAQ's.

4. Visitor (B-2) Visas

Unmarried partners are not eligible for F-2/J-2 dependent visas. They may still be eligible to join their partners studying at Princeton by obtaining a B-2 visa. Please check with the nearest U.S. Embassy/Consulate about additional documentation (i.e., domestic partnership agreement, a statement from the F-1/J-1 student verifying the long-term nature of the relationship, etc.) that might be needed for the visa interview.

5. Other Immediate Family Members

If you wish to invite an immediate family member to come to your graduation, the Registrar's Office issues family letters of invitation to all undergraduate and graduate students. Please request this letter by sending an email to registrar@princeton.edu 

If you wish to invite an immediate family member to visit you at times other than graduation, Davis IC can issue Princeton University sponsored F-1 and J-1 students a letter verifying their good standing. This letter may be used to support your family member's visitor visa application. 

To request a verification letter, please send an e-mail to puvisa@princeton.edu which includes the following and is in the following format:

  • Your first name
  • Your last name
  • Your major/concentration
  • Your degree level (Bachelor's, Master's, PhD)

Please allow 5 business days for the letter processing. You can come to pick it up 5 business days after submitting your request. NOTE: The maximum number of letters we can issue is 2 (two). If more than two letters are needed, you will need to make photocopies.

For information about applying for a U.S. visitor visa, please consult the nearest U.S. Embassy/Consulate.