H4 EAD Rule Updates In the Future?

H4 EAD Rule

H4 EAD Rule

As of now, H4 EADs remain on the Regulatory Agenda for Removal. This means the Federal government is taking the necessary steps to remove the law that allows H4 visa holders to obtain an employment authorization card.  

Although removing the rule appears to be a priority of the Trump administration, the good news is it doesn’t appear the rule will be published any time soon. Therefore, H4 EAD holders can continue working and H4 visa holders can apply for initial EADs or renewals, if they qualify.

Before we discuss how to get an EAD, it’s interesting to note that the Federal Government is holding up the implementation of this rule in the rule making process and in court.  H4 visa holders were first allowed to obtain EADs in 2015 during the President Obama administration. Almost immediately a group of American workers challenged the rule in court alleging the rule hurt U.S. citizen workers and that the Department of Homeland Security was not authorized to pass such a rule. It is interesting to note this because that means the plaintiffs in that case are asking the court to not allow H4 visa holders to receive EADs, which is the same thing the U.S. government is in the process of doing by removing the H4 EAD rule. So currently we’re in a situation where the U.S. government is actively trying to remove the rule, while simultaneously defending the removal of the rule in court.

Currently, that case is at the D.C. Court of Appeals. Oral argument was held on October 22nd. As of now, we are awaiting a decision. There’s no telling how long a decision will take. It is an interesting situation but that doesn’t preclude anyone from applying for H4 EADs.

So how does one qualify –

First, a person in H4 visa status doesn’t automatically qualify for an EAD as result of being in that status. To qualify for an H4 EAD, the H4 nonimmigrant must be the spouse of an H-1B visa holder who either is the principal beneficiary of an approved I-140 or have been granted H-1B status under AC21, more formally called the 21st Century Department of Justice Appropriations Authorization ACt. So if you qualify for an H4 EAD or need to renew yours, you can still do so. For more information or help applying for an h4 EAD, please visit contact us.

This blog should be used for informational purposes only. It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice. If you need legal advice regarding H4 EAD Rule Updates, or other Immigration Law matters, please feel free to contact Phil D. Ortega at 480.461.5330, log on to udallshumway.com,  or contact an attorney in your area. Udall Shumway PLC is located in Mesa, Arizona and is a full service law firm. We assist Individuals, families, businesses, schools and municipalities in Mesa and the Phoenix/East Valley.