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proposed rule for h-4 eads published

On May 12, U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services published a Proposed Rule which would allow for spouses of certain H-1B visa holders to apply for an Employment Authorization Document.

The proposed rule would limit the H-1B spouse (H-4) EAD only to H-1B visa holders who are far along in applying for a green card based on employment — they would either need to have an approved immigrant visa petition (Form I-140) or have already received an extension of their H-1B visa status beyond the usual six year maximum based on their pending green card case (the “AC21” regulations).

There is a 60 day period for comments, so no further developments are expected for the next few months. Given the limited number of people the proposed rule would ultimately benefit, we are hopeful Immigration Services will consider a wider pool, for instance lowering the threshold to anyone who has begun their green card application.

Please watch our website for additional information as it becomes available.

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