Immigration Services International


What is a J-2 Visa?

What is a J-2 Visa?

The J-2 visa is a nonimmigrant visa category designed for the dependents of J-1 exchange visitors in the United States. It allows the spouse and unmarried children (under 21 years old) of J-1 visa holders to accompany them during their stay and engage in various activities, including study or work, depending on specific authorization granted by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

The J-2 visa aims to support family unity while providing opportunities for dependents to enrich their cultural experiences and educational pursuits during their time in the U.S. It’s important to note that certain restrictions and requirements apply, and understanding the intricacies of the J-2 visa process is crucial for a successful and compliant stay in the United States.

To apply for a J-2 visa, the process typically involves the following steps:


    1. DS-2019 Form: The J-1 visa holder (principal applicant) must obtain the DS-2019 form from the sponsoring organization that facilitated their exchange program. This form will include information about the J-2 dependents.

    1. SEVIS Fee Payment: Both the J-1 and J-2 visa applicants are generally required to pay the SEVIS (Student and Exchange Visitor Information System) fee. This fee helps fund the SEVIS program that supports the administration of the exchange visitor program.

    1. DS-160 Form: Complete the DS-160 Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application form. Be sure to print the confirmation page with the barcode, as it will be needed for the visa application process.

    1. Visa Application: Schedule an appointment at the U.S. embassy or consulate in the country where the J-2 visa applicants reside. Each applicant, including dependents, must attend the visa interview. It’s essential to check the specific requirements and procedures of the U.S. embassy or consulate where the application will be processed.

    1. Required Documentation: Gather the necessary documentation, which typically includes:


        • Passport valid for at least six months beyond the intended period of stay.

        • DS-2019 form (issued to the J-1 visa holder).

        • DS-160 confirmation page.

        • SEVIS fee payment receipt.

        • Passport-size photographs.

        • Proof of relationship to the J-1 visa holder (marriage certificate for spouses, birth certificates for children).

        • Proof of financial ability to cover living expenses in the U.S.

    1. Visa Interview: Attend the scheduled visa interview. Be prepared to discuss the purpose of the visit, ties to the home country, and plans during the stay in the U.S.

    1. Biometric Information: Some applicants may be required to provide biometric information, such as fingerprints, as part of the visa application process.

    1. Visa Approval and Entry: If the visa is approved, the J-2 visa holders can enter the U.S. and join the J-1 visa holder. It’s important to note the authorized period of stay and any specific conditions on the visa.

It’s recommended to check the specific requirements and procedures of the U.S. embassy or consulate where the J-2 visa application will be processed, as they may vary slightly. Additionally, the process and requirements are subject to change, so it’s advisable to consult the official website of the U.S. Department of State or contact the respective U.S. embassy or consulate for the most up-to-date information.

Scroll to Top