Spouses and/or children under the age of 21 who wish to accompany or join the principal (or primary) exchange visitor (J) visa holder in the U.S. for the duration of his/her stay require exchange visitor visas.
Work – The spouse and/or children of an exchange visitor in the U.S. may not work in J-2 status, unless they have filed Form I-765 Application for Employment Authorization with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and has received approval of the application for permission to work [in the form of an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) card from USCIS]. Employment authorization is required to pursue any employment physically inside the U.S. (including for a foreign-based employer).
Study – The spouse and/or children of an exchange visitor visa holder who are in the U.S. on an exchange visitor visa may study in the U.S. in J-2 status.