Maintaining Your Dependent Immigration Record

Dependents of international students and scholars have certain immigration regulations that they must follow in order to maintain their immigration status. This includes employment and study eligibility, travel requirements, and health insurance. Please review the information below for a brief overview of these requirements. If you have any additional questions please email the ISSS team or visit with an International Advisor during Open Advising hours.

Health Insurance for Dependents

CSU does not offer a spouse or dependent health insurance plan. Spouses and domestic partners of CSU students may enroll in the CSU Health Network for a fee on a semester basis, or pay for medical services as they are administered by the CSU Health Network. (Children may not enroll at this time).

To find the names of private doctors in the area, inquire at the Health Center at 970-491-7121, at the Poudre Valley Hospital at 495-7000, or online when searching for “Fort Collins Physicians.”

International Student Rates

International students belong to a separate group plan for their student health insurance.  If you believe that you should be billed the international student rate for health insurance, but were instead billed for the domestic student rate, please meet with someone in the Office of International Programs to resolve this issue.  Please note that charges from a previous semester cannot be modified.

Why are families excluded from CSU Health Insurance?

As of fall 2013, CSU will not provide an insurance plan to spouses and dependents of graduate students.  This policy was implemented because the cost of CSU insurance for spouse and dependents was significantly more than the cost of insurance on the open market. Spouses and children would find better prices for health insurance from other providers than they would through CSU.

CSU has historically had a very small pool of spouses and dependents enrolled in an insurance program — less than 1% of the insured student population. The insurance carrier was going to charge CSU spouses and children a high rate that CSU evaluated as unsustainable for families after comparing the costs to programs available on the open market.

The CSU Health Network website, under the student insurance/eligibility tab, lists multiple venues in which to explore health insurance options and to receive quotes.  The Colorado Insurance Exchange will be implemented in accordance with federal health care reform and more options may be available. If you have non-resident status, visit your home state website for insurance options. If your home state does not have an insurance exchange, you can access the federal insurance exchange at  Additionally, you may request individual assistance by contacting Lynne Bunn, Manager of Student Insurance by email or 970-491-7806.  Below are some examples of insurance options.

  • Colorado Health Program for families (CHP+): A safety net health organization: based on graduate student income level, spouse or domestic partner currently pregnant would qualify for a no deductible, no premium, low co-pays, and comprehensive coverage. Children also eligible. Visit the CHP website and then call 970.498.6755 or 970.498.6754 for an appointment.
  • Rocky Mountain Health Plan:  $363.80/month for a man over 30 and one 8 year old child.  $2500 deductible, with RX and maternity coverage.
  • Anthem Clear Protection 1000:  $276/month for a woman over 30 and one 8 year old child.  $1000 deductible, 70/30 coverage, maternity included with additional RX deductible.
  • Connect for Health Colorado: Find a health insurance plan for a dependent, spouse, or domestic partner.


Schedule an appointment with a Health Guide by visiting the Health District.

The Northern Colorado Medical Directory lists doctors by specialty, so you can find one for your family members. Make sure to confirm that your insurance accepts them.


F-2 Dependents: You may not engage in any employment or business under any circumstances.

J-2 Dependents: You are eligible to request employment authorization, however, you cannot start working until you receive formal authorization from USCIS. To request authorization, please complete the J-2 Dependent Employment Authorization form.

Please note: J-2 dependents who seek employment will not be able to obtain a Social Security number unless in possession of an Employment Authorization Document (EAD). Unlike J-1 Exchange Visitors, J-2 dependents are subject to Social Security taxes. They are also subject to federal income taxes and, where applicable, state income taxes.

Attending School

F-2 Spouses:

  • F-2 spouses may participate in part-time study
  • F-2 children may only engage in full-time study at the K-12 level

If an F-2 dependent wishes to pursue a degree full-time, they must first apply for and obtain F-1 status.

J-2 Spouses:

  • There are no regulatory restrictions on study for J-2 dependents.

Secondary and Primary School for Dependent Children

To enroll your children in Poudre School District, please obtain the following documents from your home country:

  • An official birth certificate, a signed hospital certificate, or a passport as valid proof of your child’s birth date
  • Official copies of the child’s school records
  • All immunization records with names and dates of vaccines received.

Required immunization for all school-aged children are diphtheria, tetanus, measles, mumps, rubella, and polio. In addition, some children from outside the United States must be screened for active tuberculosis infection.

Poudre School District

They will provide recommendations for a school close to your residence, but you must enroll your child at the individual school site. Bring the most recent immunization record of your child.

School term: late August – early June. Children ages 6-18 years.

Day Care Centers

This list is not all-inclusive and is suitable for children 6 years old and younger.

Traveling as a Dependent

Spouses and dependent family members are required to have a travel signature on their valid I-20 or DS-2019 before leaving the US if they intend to travel internationally. Please come to Laurel Hall to meet with an International Advisor during Open Advising hours if you have questions about your upcoming travel or need a travel signature.

International travel also requires a valid passport and visa to reenter the US.

Please note: If you will be traveling near a US holiday, you will want to provide enough time for our office to process your travel signature request. Holiday seasons tend to be extra busy around campus and we encourage students to plan well in advance for any travel they might be participating in. Travel within the US does not require a travel signature.