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Spouses of H-1B, L-1, and possibly E-1/E-2/E-3 workers or investors will have an easier time maintaining work authorization pursuant to a litigation settlement that has been reached with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Under the new guidance, spouses in L-2 status will be able to accept employment upon entry to the US. Similarly, those in H-4 status will also benefit from a 180-day automatic extension of their work authorization when they timely file for an extension, up to the date of their I-94 expiration.

For individuals who are in in E, H-4, or L dependent spouse status, if they have timely filed an I-765 (EAD) application, they will qualify for an extension of employment authorization until the earlier of the following: approval and/or denial of an EAD application, the expiration date of the current I94, or 180 days from expiration of the prior EAD. This announcement applies to those who plan on filing extensions AND individuals with EADs that have expired (but otherwise maintain lawful status).

In addition, in the coming months even more significant changes are expected. Those in E or L dependent spousal visa status will receive automatic authorization subsequent to visa status. When the change goes into effect, E and L dependent spouses will no longer need to file an I-765 and receive an EAD to accept employment in the US.

While this update is still pending and the Department of Homeland Security is in the process of formalizing the rollout, this is a major victory for dependent spouses of skilled workers and managers in a variety of industries.

If you believe that you or your spouse may be subject to this update, please call Wildes & Weinberg at (212) 753-3468 or email us at info@wildeslaw.com to set up a consultation with one of our skilled attorneys.

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For Further Information On How We Can Help Your Firm Meet Its Employment Eligibility Verification Obligations, Please Contact Amy Wildes At amy@wildesweinberg.com

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I have had the pleasure of working with Michael and his team for the past years through work visa applications and, most recently, a permanent resident application, all of them with a successful outcome. I can't thank them enough for their c...

Lilian Ortiz -

I have had the pleasure of working with Michael Wildes and his team for several years. Through an E3 Australian work visa and spousal Green card application and approvals. Michael together with each one of his attorneys and assistants are incredibly ...

Esti Albo -

My husband and I were introduced to Michael and his team back in April 2019. I wanted to apply for my GreenCard and Michael came highly recommended. Over the next 18-months (and a Covid lockdown) the team that looked after my application were, in a...

Carla Pierce -

Michael Wildes and his team are highly professional and provide a great service in advising and facilitating application with USCIS. I'm very grateful to have worked with them for the second time ! Thank you very much for all your help !...

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I am an Australian citizen initially wishing to travel to America for personal reasons however, after the establishment and incorporation of a business in America, I needed a working Visa. This required me to go from a B-1 visa to an E-3 Visa over a ...

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