To Bring Your Spouse/Child at the Start of Your Program

Complete the dependent information when you apply to study at IIT so that the dependents can be included on the original I-20. Additional funding is required for each dependent. Dependents do not pay the SEVIS Fee.  

To Bring Your Spouse/Child After You Have Arrived in the U.S.

The International Center will issue separate I-20s for family members and you will receive an updated I-20 reflecting the addition of dependents and updated funding.

I-20 Request

Submit the F-2 Dependent Request form with the following supporting documents to the International Center.  You may drop off the  documents or submit them by email (icenter@iit.edu).  You must allow 7 business days for processing.  The International Center advisor will contact you once the updated I-20s are ready for pick up.

  1. Request form
  2. Updated financial documents that are less than 6 months old and demonstrate your ability to cover the following expenses for 1 year or until the end of your academic program or OPT period:
    • Tuition and fees (current students only):  See current tuition rates and fees
    • Living Expenses:  $17,160/year or $1,430/month
    • Dependent Expenses:
      • First Dependent:  $4500/year or $375/month
      • Additional Dependents:  $3000/year or $250/month
  3. Copy of dependent’s passport biographical page, showing the dependent’s legal name.

Gaining F-2 Status

Issuance of the I-20 for your dependent(s) does not give your dependent(s) F-2 status in the United States. There are two ways for your dependent(s) to obtain F-2 status. These include, (1) applying for a F-2 visa a U.S. Consulate abroad and (2) applying for change of status to F-2 from within the United States.

Applying for a F-2 Visa a U.S. Consulate Abroad

If your dependent(s) are not in the United States, you must mail the new I-20(s), original financial documentation, and supporting documents to your dependent(s) abroad so that they may apply for F-2 visa(s) at a U.S. Consulate. Dependents do not need to pay the SEVIS Fee.

Mail the following to your dependent(s):

  • Original I-20 for each dependent
  • Original financial documentation
  • Copy of your Passport, F-1 visa, and I-94 card
  • Copy of your I-20
  • Copy of your SEVIS fee payment receipt
  • Copy of your academic transcripts from IIT, OPT EAD card and employment verification (employment letter/pay stubs)

After your dependent(s) is approved for a F-2 visa, they may enter the United States in F-2 status using their I-20(s). They will receive stamps in their passports indicating “F-2” status and “D/S” for duration of status.  Before leaving port of entry they should make sure the stamp is in the passport correctly. Dependents are not required to check-in at the International Center upon arrival.

Applying for Change of Status from Within the United States

Your dependent(s) may apply for change of status from within the United States by submitting an application to the USCIS after obtaining a I-20 from the International Center. To be eligible to apply for a change of status, your dependent must be in valid nonimmigrant status and the application for change of status must be received by the USCIS prior to the end date of your dependent(s) current nonimmigrant status. If your spouse in submitting the application for change of status, unmarried children under the age of 21 may be included in the application as long as the children are in the same status as your spouse, or are in derivative status of your spouse.

The following conditions render an individual ineligible to apply for a change of status:

  • Holders of C, D, K and M status
  • Visitors with WT or WB status (Visa Waiver Program)
  • J-1 and J-2 nonimmigrants with a 2-year home residency requirement
  • Nonimmigrants who overstayed or violated their nonimmigrant status

Submit the Following Documents to The USCIS

  1. Completed I-539 form
  2. Check for $370 made payable to U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
  3. Cover letter explaining the circumstances leading to the need for a change of status.
  4. Original I-20 issued to each dependent.
  5. Original financial documentation indicating availability of funds for principal F1 (tuition, cost of living etc) and dependent(s).
  6. Proof of relationship (e.g. marriage certificate, birth certificate, adoption certificate)
  7. Photocopy of dependent’s passport (biographic pages, current visa stamp, passport expiration date)
  8. Photocopies of documentation showing current nonimmigrant status.
  9. Photocopy of F-1 passport biographic pages, passport expiration date, F-1 visa stamp, I-94, I-20 form, and OPT employment (if applicable).
  10. Dependent’s I-94 

Make sure to review the instructions for the I-539 as information is subject to change without notification. Copy complete application and mail to USCIS. The mailing address for the USCIS is located in the instructions for the I-539

Study in F-2 Status

-2 dependents are now eligible to study part-time at Illinois Tech or another university.  Children are permitted to study full-time at the early child/elementary school level (up to grade 12).  F-2 spouses may not be enrolled in full-time coursework.

Employment in F-2 Status

F-2 dependents are not permitted to work or engage in business under any circumstances.