People who get U.S. work visas often get a lot of benefits, not just for themselves but also for their families. For example, people with an H-1B nonimmigrant visa can bring their immediate family members to the U.S. on an H-4 dependent visa. This helps families stay together during the essential time of changing the H4 EAD Visa.
If you are confused about the H4 visa and how it works, don’t worry; you’re not alone. This visa can be confusing for many people. In this blog post, we will break down everything you need to know about the H4 Visa.
We will discuss the visa, its difference from H1B, and h4 EAD renewal processing time, who can apply for it, the benefits of obtaining this visa, and the requirements needed! By the end of this post, you should clearly understand the H4 visa and know if it is best for you.
The H-4 visa is available to the H category (H-1A, H-1B, H-1B1, H-2A, and H-2B) visa holders’ legal spouses and unmarried children under 21. These members of the family are called “H-4 dependents.” As an H-4 visa holder, moving to the U.S., even temporarily, has many benefits, yet, there are restrictions on your abilities.
You can apply to change your status and switch to an H-1B visa or an adjustment of status to become a green card holder to have a lawful permanent resident status while you are in the U.S. on an H4 EAD Visa status.
An H1-B visa can get an H4 visa for their spouse or child under 21 who lives with them. Spouses of people with an H1-B visa can’t work with just an H4 visa. But there is a way to get an EAD or Employment Authorization Document, which lets you work with an H4 visa.
After getting Employment Authorization Documents, you can work, but the documents also give you several other benefits.
If you have an H4 EAD Visa, you can:
- You can get a Social Security number (SSN)
- Have no limits on employment
- Have no rules about a minimum wage
- No annual restrictions are placed on the number of H4 EADs that may be issued.
What Is The Difference Between H1-B And H4 Visa?
People with degrees who want to work in the United States can get an H1-B visa. With an H4 EAD Visa, they can get a job in their field of study.
The H4 visa, on the other hand, lets you bring your family to the U.S. The H4 visa allows a spouse and minor children of an H1-B visa holder to join them in the United States.
They will be called “dependents.” During the interview for the H4 EAD visa, both the spouse and the children will be asked a series of questions that will help U.S. officials figure out why the visa is being requested.
Who Can Apply For H4- EAD?
It’s important to remember that you couldn’t get an H4 EAD visa before 2015. More specifically, you could not work in the United States without an H4 visa because your partner had an H1-B visa.
You could only go to school, open a bank account, get a driver’s license, and do a few other things.
But the H4 EAD rule was put into place in 2015. After the rule was passed, people eligible for it could start applying for an Employment Authorization Document. 3 In 2019, USCIS, or the U.S Citizenship and immigration services, recently brought up the idea of getting rid of the program. But it’s still not clear if their request will be granted or not. Everything is still up in the air.
The U.S. Court of Appeals in the District of Columbia Circuit later ruled in November that the regulation would not be altered. H4 visa holders would still be able to apply for an EAD and work in the U.S. under their visa status. 5 Still, the case was sent back to a lower court for a second look.
You won’t need a petition, a sponsor, or an LCA if you have an EAD (Labor Condition Application). You can work in just about any part of the economy. Unlike any spouse, who already has an H1-B visa, you can also work for any type of job where you want. You don’t need to follow the same rules as someone with an H1-B visa.
To get an H4 EAD visa, you must already have an H EAD visa. That means you have to be either spouse or child of a person who already has an H1-B visa. If you are a child, you can’t be married and can’t be older than 21.
You May Also Check: How To Apply For An F-1 Visa: Things You Should Know
What Are The Documents Needed for The H-4 EAD?
With your Form I-765, H4 EAD Visa Applicants may include one or more of the following papers as proof:
- Certificate of Marriage (proving you are married to an H1B visa holder).
- Your copy of Form I-94 or Form I-797 (proving your H4 status) and current and prior forms.
- The most recent copy of your EAD (if you have been issued with one).
- 2 passport pictures (make sure they are colored).
- Fill out Form G-1145 (E-notification of Application Acceptance) if you want to get an email or text message when your application is accepted.
- A certified copy of your spouse’s Form I-94 or H1B nonimmigrant passport, a previous Form I-94, and a current Form I-797 for Form I-129.
- Copies of your and your partner’s passports
- Either the government-issued ID cards (with a photo) or your birth certificate (with a photo) or your visa, which is consular issued, or your national ID (with a photo).
H4-Visa Processing Time
If you have an H4 visa and want to start working immediately, you might be interested in how long it takes to get an EAD. Processing times depend on where the service is being done, so there is no set time.
While every H4 EAD Visa case differs, the Visa petition is processed in less than 90 days. However, if you are for renewal, the processing time could take up to 120 days before your EAD is about to run out.
You should know that you can’t get an EAD until you live in the United States. If you want to start working immediately, you should send in your application as soon as you have moved into your new home.
If you have a husband or wife and any children under the age of 21 who are not married, they are eligible to apply for an H-4 visa to join you in the U.S while you are already present in the nation on an H-1B visa. An H4 EAD visa can take up to a few months to process, so you should start the application process as soon as possible.
To get the H-4 EAD, you must show certain documents, such as a copy of your passport, your marriage certificate (if you have one), and the birth certificates of any children traveling with you.
You may also need proof of your relationship, like bank statements or utility bills both of your names are on. Please visit hackinglawpractice.com to know whether you qualify for an H-4 EAD and what documentation is required.