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DHS Proposed Rule to Extend Employment Authorization to Spouses of Certain H-1B Workers

2014-05-08, BY WeGreened

May 7, 2014

Yesterday, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security announced that it will publish two proposed rules this week.  One of the rules proposes to extend employment authorization to the dependent spouses of certain H-1B workers.  In a press release dated May 6, 2014, DHS stated, “The change proposed by DHS, would allow H-4 dependent spouses of certain H-1B nonimmigrant workers to request employment authorization, as long as the H-1B worker has already started the process of seeking lawful permanent residence through employment.” 

The Notice of Proposed Rulemaking will soon be published in the Federal Register.  DHS will accept public comment on the proposed rules through the following website – www.regulations.gov.

Who Qualifies?

If the proposed rule goes into effect, you will qualify for employment authorization if:

·         You are an H-4 dependent spouse (dependent children will not qualify); and

·         The principal H-1B worker:

o   Is the beneficiary of an approved Form I-140, Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker; or

o   Has been granted an extension of his/her authorized period of stay in the U.S. under the American Competitiveness in the Twenty-First Century Act of 2000 (“AC21”).

How the New Rule Benefits Our Clients

The new rule will benefit our EB-2 NIW clients on H-1B nonimmigrant status under two circumstances:

1.       Clients on H-1B nonimmigrant status from India and China with an approved EB-2 NIW

·         Such clients are not eligible to file an I-485 because their I-140 priority date is not current.  However, they are able to extend their H-1B visa status in three-year increments until their priority date is current.  Under the new rule, they will also be able to apply for employment authorization for their H-4 dependent spouse such that their spouse will also be able to work in the U.S. while the family waits for the I-140 priority date to become current.

2.       Clients on H-1B nonimmigrant status from India and China with an EB-2 NIW I-140 petition pending for more than 365 days at the time they reach the six-year limit for their H-1B

·         Such clients are eligible to extend their H-1B visa status in one-year increments beyond the six-year limit.  Under the new rule, they will also be able to apply for employment authorization for their H-4 dependent spouse such that their spouse will also be able to work in the U.S. while the I-140 petitioner waits for adjudication of his/her EB-2 NIW petition.

Please see here to contact our firm for more information.

You can read the full DHS press release here.

 


The key to our success is the way in which we present supporting evidence and provide the highest quality petition letters. With over 10,000 I-140 EB-1 ( EB-1A Alien of Extraordinary Ability; EB-1B Outstanding Researcher or Professor) and EB-2 NIW (National Interest Waiver) approvals, our firm has acquired substantial information about USCIS decisions, which gives us substantial advantage over firms that only handle a small number of cases. 

Based on hundreds of approvals every month and our close track of USCIS internal memoranda, AAO decisions, and judicial review decisions, we have unique insight into the USCIS adjudication trends. Not only do we apply this insight into our approaches to our clients' cases, but we also take the time and energy to carefully review all RFEs (Requests for Evidence), NOIDs (Notices of Intent to Deny), approvals, and denials issued on our cases so that we can further increase our understanding of USCIS strategies and decision-making processes so that we can advise our clients on the best ways to proceed with their petitions.

While other petitioners and attorneys may still use templates to draft recommendation letters or petition letters, our clients' recommendation letters and petition letters are tailored to their individual credentials to best persuade a USCIS officer that our clients meet the requirements of the category they are applying under and therefore their petitions deserve to be approved. To provide the best EB-1 and EB-2 NIW services, our law firm only selects attorneys who have received their professional Juris Doctor degrees from the top law schools in the U.S. and who have garnered rigorous analytical skills through years of experience.


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