Are family members allowed to accompany me to the U.S.?

Some countries approve “derivative” J-2 visas for immediate family members of the teacher. If the J-2 visa holder is in correct status, s/he may apply for a work permit (EAD) after arriving in the U.S. and applying for a social security number.  Form I-765 may be downloaded, fee paid by credit card and emailed directly to the Internal Revenue service.  Complete interactive Form EI-765 and submit it online:

 CHF does not guarantee visas for dependent relatives nor work permits.  When requesting a work permit, the dependent must explain why the income is not needed to support the family, only for the dependent’s enhancement or to improve the family’s overall standard of living.  The maximum number of dependents usually allowed is three: spouse and 2 children or 3 children.  If an exchange visitor is requesting four or more dependents, special procedures apply.  The teacher is not allowed four dependents during the first year.

For specific directions on how to apply for a J-2 visa, see the CHF video on this website by clicking on ORIENTATION / Orientation Videos / and the language of your choice: English, French, Mandarin, or Spanish.

Generally, dependents are not allowed for the first year.  Once the teacher has had a year to listen to English and interact with English speakers and those of other nationalities on a daily basis, s/he has acquired a surface understanding of the culture which can be passed on to the family if they decide to join for the teacher for the following second, third, fourth and fifth year.