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Employment Authorization for Certain H-4 Dependent Spouses Final Rule in Effect Today, May 26, 2015

Archived Content

The information on this page is out of date. However, some of the content may still be useful, so we have archived the page.

Release Date

Certain H-4 dependent spouses may now apply for employment authorization under the H-4 rule. On February 24, 2015, USCIS announced that effective today, May 26, 2015, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) would begin accepting applications for employment authorization from certain H-4 dependent spouses of H-1B nonimmigrants who are seeking employment-based lawful permanent resident status. 

Starting today, you may apply for employment authorization under this rule if your H-1B nonimmigrant spouse:

  • Is the principal beneficiary of an approved Form I-140, Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker; or
  • Has been granted H-1B status under sections 106(a) and (b) of the American Competitiveness in the Twenty-first Century Act of 2000 as amended by the 21st Century Department of Justice Appropriations Authorization Act (AC21).  AC21 permits H-1B nonimmigrants seeking lawful permanent residence to work and remain in the United States beyond the six-year limit on their H-1B status.

For more information on applying for employment authorization under the H-4 rule, please visit the Employment Authorization for Certain H-4 Dependent Spouses Web page and the list of Frequently Asked Questions that we have compiled since we announced the H-4 rule in February.

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