H4 EAD News 2018 DHS – USCIS Plan Withdrawal

Anil Gupta  21 Sep, 18      73  USA

DHS publishing H4 EAD withdrawal rule by Dec 2018 - told Federal court. USCIS H4 EAD renewal RFE if filed before 120 days of expiry. Officially 180 is allowed.

Update Sep 21, 2018 – DHS expects to publish rule by Jan 2019

DHS has informed the federal court that they expect the proposed H4 EAD withdrawal rule to be published for public comments within 3 months i.e. approximately around the first week of Jan 2019.

Currently, the rule set is pending with USCIS for their review. DHS has completed their portion of rulemaking work.

Related: 42% Increase in Indian H1B Extension, Transfer, Amendment Denials

H4-EAD withdrawal survey – 5k people already responded

This H4-EAD survey helps find a mood of community to know if H1B family will move out of USA if H4 EAD is stopped?

You need Google account to fill it. You will be able to see results after you have filled your own data. No email collected. No spam. Your response remains anonymous.

Open H4 EAD withdrawal survey in new window.

NEWS: On Aug 22, 2018, Internet Association sent a letter to USCIS requesting a re-think on their H4 EAD withdrawal rule.
On Sep 6, 2018, USCIS replied back confirming their stance of no backing off.

Update Sep 17, 2018 – SaveJobsUSA files motion in Court

As per news reports, SaveJobsUSA has asked the federal court to continue with the case as DHS is taking too long to publish rules for H4 EAD withdrawal.

The federal court will give a chance to DHS to submit their reply and then decide as to move ahead with the case or keep waiting as they have been doing for 6+ months now.

Update Aug 23, 2018

Business Roundtable has sent an official letter to USCIS on their recent policy changes and how they affect the H1B families with H4-EAD withdrawal, on Aug 23 2018.

Letter in support of H4 EAD is signed by Apple, ADP, American Airlines, Pepsi, Coca-Cola among other CEOs.:

Revoked Status for Spouses: USCIS is soon expected to revoke work authorization eligibility for the H-4 spouses of H-1B employees. These spouses are often highly skilled in their own rights and have built careers and lives around their ability to contribute to companies here. Other countries allow these valuable professionals to work, so revoking their U.S. work authorization will likely cause high-skilled immigrants to take their skills to competitors outside the United States.

DHS files report in Federal Court – No intention of backing off on H4 EAD withdrawal

Official news: DHS has filed a report in SaveJobsUSA vs H4-EAD court case on 20 Aug, 2018 saying that they are in ‘Final Stages‘ of drafting the H4-EAD withdrawal rules.

DHS has conveyed to the court that their intention of taking away the H4 work permits is clear and they are in the last stage of framing the rules. DHS response

We update this page every day to make sure no H4 EAD termination news is missed.

Earlier in 2018, ‘intended time‘ was Feb 2018 but was delayed to June 2018. As of today, June 2018 deadline has also been missed.

Related: EB2 India Predictions – 20 years average wait time, 151 years worst case

Update May 19, 2018 – USCIS issuing RFEs for filing renewal before 120 days!

Recently, H4 EAD renewal applications have started receiving rejections based on RFE with reason:

You have filed for H4-EAd renewal too soon. You are allowed to file 120 days before expiry only.

USCIS issuing H4 EAD RFE for filing before 120 days
USCIS issuing H4 EAD RFE for filing before 120 days

You can read the comment from people who received H4-EAD renewal RFE here:

USCIS officially allows filing H4 EAD renewal 180 days before expiry

The H4 EAD RFEs are in stark contract with official USCIS H4-EAD renewal guidance which allows H1B spouses to file H4-EAD renewal **180 days** before actual expiry:

H4 EAD renewal can be filed 180 days before expiry
H4 EAD renewal can be filed 180 days before expiry

Related: H1B Visa Approved but Status is Administrative Processing

The same 180 day renewal policy has been mentioned at 3 other places on USCIS website: Specially for H4-EAD renewal same as screen shot above, USCIS EAD Rules and EAD.

Update May 16, 2018 – 130 bipartisan member letter to USCIS

130 bipartisan congress members have sent a signed letter of support in favor of H4EAD to USCIS. They have strongly argued to keep the work authorization intact.

I know a lot of people who were working on H4-EAD and were eligible for H1B, have already converted.
If you can, you should too convert as early as possible to keep your job and income source un-affected.

DHS / USCIS agenda to remove H4-EAD work authorization in 2018

DHS is actively working on making rules on removing H-4 Dependent Spouses from the class C(26) of Aliens Eligible for Employment Authorization (EAD).

Marked as ‘Economical Impact and Significant’ rule, DHS has the legal obligation of giving only 30 days for public comments instead of longer 60 or 90 days!

Is H4 EAD still Valid in 2018?

You CAN apply for NEW H4-EAD and H4-EAD renewals at this time. DHS is issuing H4-EADs.

Will existing H4 EAD be Valid after DHS withdraws work authorization?

It is not known if DHS will remove existing H4 EADs or not.

As per the past DHS rules, DACA and similar EAD withdrawals, existing EADs were not stopped in one shot. The active ones were given their remaining validity time on EAD to use.

Hence, it is safe to assume that existing H4 EADs will also be allowed to run through their validity period.

H4 EAD News - DHS planning to revoke work permits
H4 EAD News – DHS planning to revoke work permits

Should I change status from H4 EAD to H1B?

If you are eligible for converting to H1B, we strongly recommend that you should change your status.

Can a Lawsuit be filed against H4EAD withdrawal?

Depending on what rule DHS comes out with, the chances are high and a lawsuit stay can be obtained by H4-EAD groups in their favor.
This essentially means that if we get a court stay order, it can take years to reach a decision.