Many international students want their families to join them in the U.S. Before they arrive, we encourage you to think about their adjustment to living here and how your life will change after they join you.
An F-1 visa holder may apply for F-2 dependent status for their dependent if they can demonstrate their eligibility requirements for F-2 dependent status based on the U.S. definition of “Dependents”.
All other family members must apply for a B-1 or B-2 visitor's visa to gain entry to the United States.
F-2 dependents can be removed or terminated for the following reasons:
If you wish to have your F-2 dependent(s) removed from your F-1 SEVIS record, please follow these steps:
Dependents in F-2 generally need the same documents to re-enter the U.S. as the primary F-1 student.
F-2 dependents are not required to travel with the primary F-1. However, the F-2 dependent must carry the following documents required for re-entry to the US:
F-2 dependents are not allowed to work in the U.S. under any circumstances. Since F-2 dependents are not allowed to work in the U.S. they are also not eligible for a social security number.
However, F-1 students can obtain an Individual Tax Identification Number (ITIN) for F-2 dependents if it is needed for tax filing purposes. F-2 spouses and family members may also apply for Individual Taxpayer Identification Numbers (ITINs) via Form W-7, available through the Internal Revenue Service.
F-2 dependents may volunteer if their volunteer activities do not displace a paid position.
F-2 minor children are eligible to enroll in full-time studies in elementary or secondary schools. Maine State education law requires that all children ages 5 years through 18 be enrolled in school. F-2 minor children must comply with compulsory education requirements (Kindergarten through 12th grade). Parents can choose to enroll their children in public schools or private schools. Public schools are free to attend, and most children in the Fort Kent area go to public schools.
If you choose to enroll your child in a public school, you will need to determine which school they will attend. Public schools in the US operate on a system called “districting,” which means that the neighborhood you live in most often dictates the school your child will attend. School districts draw boundaries in the general proximity of different elementary, middle, and high schools in their region, to create distinctive areas, or “attendance zones” for their schools. Your child will attend the elementary, middle, or high school for the attendance zone that covers your neighborhood.
F-2 spouses are eligible to enroll in part-time studies (degree, avocational, or recreational) at the postsecondary level in any certified program at an SEVP-certified school, as long as the study does not amount to what regulations define as full time for an F-1 student [defined in 8 CFR 214.2(f)(6)]. At UMFK, F-2 dependents undergraduate levels are limited to a maximum of 11 credits, and those at the graduate level are limited to a max of 8 credits. For more information, please visit the Department of Homeland Security’s Study in the States website.
F-2 dependents of F-1 students in the United States may study part-time. An F-2 dependent who wants to enroll full-time in a course of post-secondary academic or vocational study must apply for and obtain approval to change nonimmigrant status to F-1, J-1, or another status allowing full-time study before beginning their full-time study.
F-2 dependents are required to obtain health insurance during their stay in the U.S.
Minimum coverage must meet or exceed the following:
|Repatriation of remains||$25,000|
|Deductible per accident or illness||$500|
If the F-2 dependent wants to apply for a Maine driver's license, the F-1 student must accompany them. Both the F-1 student and F-2 dependent must bring all the required documents, including a signed I-20, a valid passport and visa, proof of residence, and an SSN card or a Letter of Social Security Number Ineligibility (which can be requested from the Social Security Administration).
The lawful immigration status of all F-2 dependents is connected to the lawful status of the primary F-1 visa holder. If an F-1 visa holder is granted a program extension, all F-2 dependents are granted the extension automatically. When the F-1 student is authorized for post-completion OPT, the F-2 dependent's status is also extended through the authorized period of OPT. If the F-1 student/scholar falls out of status, the F-2 dependents are also out of status.
Children who are born in the US are considered to be US citizens. However, parents who hold non-immigrant visas in the US need to be aware that acceptance of federal or state government benefits for maternity expenses or any other government assistance will jeopardize their immigration status.
Public assistance includes food stamps, Aid to Families with Dependent Children, the WIC program, Mainecare, and Medicaid.
Local welfare offices do provide the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (CIS) with the names and current addresses of every non-immigrant who applies for public assistance. Acceptance of such benefits, even for a child who is a US citizen, is a serious violation of your immigration status.
If your spouse or child is already inside the U.S. in another nonimmigrant status, there are two ways to change one's status to F-2:
There are two ways to change status to F-1 once F-2 dependents are admitted to an educational program.
Once the F-1 student has completed their studies and has left the U.S., the F-2 dependents must also leave.
Dependent children over age 21 are not eligible for F-2 status and will need to change to another status such as F-1 (for full-time students) if they wish to stay in the U.S.
At the end of the F-1 program, there is a 60-day grace period during which the F-1/F-2 may stay in the U.S. Once the F-1 leaves the U.S., the F-2 dependents must leave as well.
Report any changes to ISS: if your dependent departs the U.S. permanently or changes their immigration status, you must report their departure/change of status. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org so that we can remove them as a dependent from your record.
The communities in the area hold events and other opportunities to get out and socialize. Be sure to check in on local listings to stay up to date on local happenings.
The following resources are available in Aroostook County and are not directly affiliated with the University of Maine. As such, they are available to students and non-students. We encourage individuals to be aware of the resources available to them and seek the resources that they need.
For additional help and information, you can visit these resources.