Add F-2 Dependents

Dependents of F-1 students include spouse and children, and dependents are allowed to stay in the U.S. in F-2 status for the duration of the F-1 student's study, including any post-completion OPT time.  Your dependent(s) must request dependent(s)' I-20s from OIP in order to apply for F-2 visas in their home countries, or file change of status to F-2 if they are in the U.S.

Documents Required to Add F-2 Dependent(s)

To request dependent(s) I-20, email the following documents to from your SF State email account.  We accept digital signatures, scanned copies, and high resolution/clear pictures of the completed form and documents.  We will review your request and issue a new I-20 within 5 business days:  

  • A signed I-20 Request Form   (PDF, 129 KB).
  • A signed Financial Affidavit  (PDF, 203 KB).
  • Proof of Finances: you and/or your sponsor(s) must prove that you have the financial ability to pay for school costs plus living expenses for one academic year, plus additional $5,000 for each dependent.  See Financial Affidavit for the minimum amount of funds you are required to have.  Photocopies are acceptable.
    • Acceptable types of proof: balance verification issued by the bank or Financial Guarantee/award letters issued by the scholarship organization.
    • The proof must be issued within the past 6 months.
    • If you have sponsor(s), your sponsor(s) must provide a Sponsor’s Letter (See template. Microsoft Word, 12.1KB) signed by your sponsor(s) along with the financial proof.
The following documents are considered level 1 confidencial data by SF State.  Please encrypted these files before emailing to
  • Photocopies of your dependent(s)' passport(s) (the bio page with photos only),  
  • Proof of your dependent(s)' current status if your dependent(s) have entered the U.S. under non-immigrant status
  • Photocopy of your marriage certificate (in English or in your native language with a certified English translation)
  • Photocopies of the birth certificates of any children (in English or in your native language with a certified English translation)

*7Zip ( as a free encryption tool. 

Upon approval, OIP will issue dependent I-20(s) for you and your family member(s). Your family member(s) will then need to use the dependent I-20(s) to apply for an F-2 visa(s).  Only spouses and children can be added as F-2 dependents.  F-2 dependents are not allowed to work in the U.S.


A few things to consider before bringing your spouse and children to San Francisco:

  • Study in the U.S.: F-2 spouses and children may enroll in SF State academic programs for less than a full course of study.  Children who are under 18 may attend school (from elementary school to high school) full-time.
  • Finance: The estimated living expenses for each additional family member is $5000 per academic year (nine months).  It is recommended that you complete, for yourself, a one page itemization of expenses for the last nine months (if a student) -- including tuition, books, medical expenses, automobile or transportation expenses, rent, food, utilities, laundry, entertainment, clothes, health insurance coverage, and miscellaneous expenses. You should then project additional expenses for the family and assess whether or not you have the necessary funds to cover these expenses.  
  • Medical Expenses and Child Care: Medical care is very expensive. It is extremely important that you purchase adequate health insurance for your entire family. Child care expenses are also high around the Bay Area.
  • Cultural Adjustment: Remember that while you are here to be a student, family members often spend a great deal of time alone. Family members will also need attention and you will need to spend time with your family, sometimes when you feel that you should be studying. Family members may also experience loneliness and depression, and the demands that your studies make on you can sometimes lead to conflict and tension.

Last updated: June 2020


For PDF files, you'll need Adobe Acrobat 5.0 or above to view it. If you need Adobe Acrobat Reader it's available free from Adobe (link is external).