EAD for H-4 Spouses Begins
On May 26th, USCIS began accepting applications for form I-765 for certain H-4 spouses of H-1B professionals. Prior to the implementation of this policy, H-4 spouses were unable to work creating unnecessary financial burdens to H-1B households. Now, with this policy in effect, USCIS hopes to create financial stability for those who qualify, which USCIS estimates exceeds approximately 175,000.
1. Who qualifies for an EAD as an H-4 spouse?
The H-4 category is for spouses of H-1B visa holders. In order for the H-4 spouse to qualify, the H-1B professional must:
- Have an approved I-140 visa petition;
- Be the beneficiary of a PERM application that was filed at least 1 year (365 days) before the end of his/her 6-year limitation of stay as an H-1B holder; or,
- Have an I-140 that was filed at least 1 year (365 days) before the end of his/her 6-year limitation of stay as an H-1B holder.
If the H-1B holder’s PERM application was approved, then their I-140 must have been filed with USCIS within 180 days of the approval.
2. How do I obtain my EAD?
In general, you must file form I-765 with the appropriate filing fee. Also, include a copy of your spouse’s approved I-140, or PERM or I-140 application that was filed 365 days prior to the expiration of the 6-year stay.
3. What benefit would the EAD grant an H-4 spouse?
Full employment authorization for as long as the H-4 status is valid.
4. When can I submit my EAD application and H-4 extension? How long will it take until I receive a decision?
Both can be submitted concurrently within 6 months prior to the expiration of H-4 status. I-765 decisions generally take about 3 months if filed properly, but with an H-4 extension, it is likely to take longer.
5. Do H-4 children qualify?
6. Is there any way to expedite an EAD request?
If you need assistance with your immigration matter, do not hesitate to our Sacramento immigration lawyer. Our Sacramento immigration law firm would be happy to discuss your case with you, so contact us today.
*The information provided in this post does not constitute legal advice or opinion. The information is for guidance purposes only. Individual situations vary and you should contact us for a consultation. Carson & Kyung, Sacramento’s Immigration Attorneys on EAD for H-4 Spouses Begins .