Family members (other than your spouse and children) wishing to visit the U.S. must apply for a tourist visa at the US embassy or consulate in their home countries. There is no documentation available from the ISS Office for tourist visa applications.
Ensure that your family members have the following evidence, which will be helpful during the visa application process:
- Invitation letter from you: Write a letter of invitation that includes the following: your name and your reason for living in the US, the names of your family members who wish to visit, the purpose and approximate length of the visit, and whether you will provide room and board or any other financial assistance for the visit. An invitation letter template is attached to this email. ISS has provided a sample invitation letter for your convenience.
- Your evidence of funding: If you provide room and board or any other specific expenses of the trip (such as airfare), you should supply evidence of your funding such as a bank statement or employment letter. There is no minimum dollar amount that you must reflect; but you should indicate an amount that is reasonable for the level of support you are providing.
- Evidence of your status in the US: provide your family members with a copy of your I-20 (do NOT send the original) and other documents verifying your status in the US. (It is not necessary to get a new I-20 when inviting family members).
- Evidence of intent to return home: Your family members must prove that they will return home after visiting the US. Documents showing employment, property ownership, close family relations in home country, or enrollment in school (in the home country) are considered good evidence of intent to return home.
- Family Members' Evidence of Funding: If your family members intend to cover their own expenses, they should provide a bank statement, employment verification or other evidence of funding.
We have verified with multiple official sources that invitation letters from the ISS Office are totally ignored during visa interviews, which is why we do not issue them. But please see above for suggestions of documentation that your family can take to their interviews.