February 24, 2015
Earlier today, February 24, 2015, the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced they will begin accepting applications for employment authorization from certain H-4 dependent spouses of H-1B nonimmigrants beginning on May 26, 2015. Individuals intending to apply for employment authorization or with questions as to eligibility should seek counsel from immigration attorneys now.

Eligible individuals include H-4 dependent spouses whose spouse in H-1B status is: 1) the principal beneficiary of an approved Form I-140 immigrant petition for alien worker; or 2) has been granted H-1B status under AC21, which allows certain H-1B nonimmigrants seeking lawful permanent residence to work and remain in the US beyond the normal six year limit on H-1B status.

The new regulation requires eligible H-4 dependent spouses to file Form I-765 application for employment authorization with supporting evidence and pay the required $380 filing fee. Once USCIS approves the Form I-765 application and the H-4 dependent spouse receives an employment authorization document, the H-4 spouse may begin working in the US.

For more information, please contact the author or your Polsinelli attorney.