The spouse and unmarried minor children (under 21 years of age) of the J-1 scholar are eligible for J-2 dependent status. 


  • J-2 dependents must have their own DS-2019.
    • To request a DS-2019 for your J-2 dependent with your initial DS-2019, please complete the sections relating to Dependent Information.
    • If you are requesting a dependent DS-2019  after you have arrived in US, please submit thee Request for Dependent I-20 or DS-2019 form with the appropriate financial funding information
  • Once your dependent has received a DS-2019, he/she must either:
    • Apply for a Visa at a US Consulate overseas (except citizens of Canada & Bermuda) or,
    • Apply for a Change of Status within the US
  • J-2 dependents are eligible to apply for employment authorization from USCIS as long as the employment is not for the purpose of supporting the J-1 scholar.
  • The Department of State mandates that all Exchange Visitors and their dependents carry adequate health insurance coverage for the entirety of their stay.  Willful failure to comply with these insurance requirements will result in termination of the Exchange Visitor's program.
  • J-2 children are permitted to enroll in elementary or secondary schools while in the US.
  • J-2s may engage in full-time study, as long as their primary reason for being in the US is to accompany the J-1.
  • The duration of their stay depends on the J-1’s period of stay, and is automatically extended along with the J-1’s

J-2 Exchange Visitors are required to have health insurance during the entirety of their stay.

  • Willful failure to comply with these insurance requirements will result in termination of the Exchange Visitor's program.
  • Insurance coverage must meet the following criteria:
  •     The insurance must cover the entire period of participation in the Exchange Visitor program (i.e. from the DS-2019 program start date to the end date).
  •     Medical benefits must provide a minimum of $100,000 (currently $50,000) per accident or illness.
  •     Medical evacuation must be covered in the amount of $50,000 (currently $10,000), minimum. Medical evacuation is emergency transportation to the home country.
  •     Repatriation must be covered in the amount of $25,000 (currently $7,500), minimum. Repatriation is the transportation of remains back to the home country in the unfortunate event of death.
  •     The deductible must not exceed $500 per accident or illness.
  • Individuals who are Resident Aliens for tax purposes are subject to the individual mandate of the Affordable Care Act
  • Include NAFSA link www.nafsa.org/aca