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International Office

F-1 to F-2 Change of Nonimmigrant Status

Contact the International Office as soon as you know you must obtain F-2 status in order to discuss your options.


  1. Obtain a dependent I-20.
    The primary F-1 status holder--your spouse or parent currently studying in F-1 status--must request a dependent I-20 for you through the International Office.
  2. Review your options for obtaining a new status. Decide which option to use: "Travel and Reentry" or "Change Status in the U.S."
  3. Prepare the required documents and follow next steps for obtaining F-2 status (details below).

Option 1: Travel and Reentry

Review the International Office Visas page.

Option 2: Change of Status in the U.S.

Submit your application to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) by mail. 

Mail the following documents to the USCIS Lockbox.

  • Form I-539
  • $370 fee: check or money order payable to “U.S. Department of Homeland Security”
    • You may also pay the filing fee with a credit card by completing form G-1450 and place the form on top of your application when filing. 
  • Original I-94 card or photocopy of admission stamp and paper printout of  I-94 record  
  • Photocopy of the visa page and identification page in your passport
  • Photocopy of the I-20 listing you as the dependent of the F-1
  • Photocopy of your previous F-1 I-20.
  • Photocopies of your spouse's I-20 and I-94 card (front and back)
  • Evidence that your F-1 spouse is maintaining status (for example, a copy of his or her transcript and current enrollment verification)
  • Photocopy of proof of family relationship to the F-1 (for example, marriage certificate) in English
  • Evidence of financial support (F-2 dependents are not permitted to work in the U.S.)
  • Detailed letter requesting and explaining the need to change status