H4 EAD News June 2019 DHS Revoke Rule OMB Review Pending

Written by Anil Gupta
  By Anil Gupta          Updated  19 Jun, 19

June 19, 2019 – OMB Review Pending

H4 EAD news update today: OMB review is still pending. A widespread expectation is that OMB may come out with something by June 20. It is an important day as the OMB will complete 90 + 30 days of extension after the DHS submitted revoke rules for review on Feb 20, 2019.

Some Indian newspapers ran a story on June 18 about USCIS saying that H4 EAD rule is delayed but there is nothing new that we have observed.

Multiple H4 and H4 EAD approvals have been reported from Vermont now after the court case. The first H4EAD approval after biometrics was on June 11.

The theory that USCIS and DHS were intentionally delaying the EAD approval does not seem to stand ground now.

H4 EAD Protection Act

H4 Employment Protection Act was re-introduced by California Congress woman (Eshoo, Lofgren) in 116th congress in May last week. The chances of saving H4EAD with this law are very low at this time as compared to high probability of success with H4 EAD revoke lawsuit.

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

DHS Spring 2019 Agenda, Cissna Resigns

H4 EAD revocation appears on DHS Spring 2019 rule making agenda and USCIS director Cissna resigns. Cissna was strictly against giving out H4EAD work permits.

H4 EAD removal is on DHS Spring 2019 agenda list
H4 EAD removal is on DHS Spring 2019 agenda list


Trump’s DACA Executive Order Overturned by Court

A positive news came from Federal court on May 17 when they ruled against Trump’s attempt to stop DACA program that shields young immigrants from deportation.

Court mentioned that DHS did not “adequately account” for how ending DACA program would affect the hundreds of thousands of young people who “structured their lives” around the program, reports NBCNews.

This probably means that DHS H4 EAD revocation rule also has low chances of standing lawsuit.

We are actively tracking OMB for any update but neither the meeting attendees nor OMB has published any details.

OMB Proposed Rule Meetings

An OMB meeting on Mar 26, 2019 was attended by lot of Indian people possibly putting the strong argument in favor of H4-EAD in front of OMB:

H4 EAD revoke rule Indians meeting OMB
H4 EAD revoke rule Indians meeting OMB

We do not have details of the outcome of these OMB Proposed Stage meetings that they are conducting regularly:

H4 EAD revoke rule OMB proposed rule meetings
H4 EAD revoke rule OMB proposed rule meetings

If you are one of the attendees or know the meeting details, please do share with us on our Facebook Group. We will share it here with your name.

No details are available for Amanda’s OMB review meeting from May 1 either. We contacted her directly for an update but she has not responded.

The Amanda’s meeting shows as ‘scheduled’ at this time which probably means that it did not happen.

OMB May Not Approve H4EAD Revoke Rule

John Miano from Center for Immigration Studies has the opinion that OMB may not approve H4EAD revoke rule.

Miano says that ‘Deep State’ (business lobby with government without explicitly showing it to public) will not let the H4 EAD go away. He has argued that DACA EAD was not defended by DHS in court with good arguments when they had the intentions of revoking it either. The same behavior has been shown by DHS in SaveJobsUSA federal court case.

John Miano believes that the text of H4 EAD revoke rule has been drafted in such a way that it is unlikely to survive a legal challenge.

My opinion and attorney analysis on why H4 EAD revoke may be blocked by lawsuit even if passed by DHS and OMB.

SaveJobsUSA brief in Court

SaveJobsUSA presented their points in federal court hearing on Apr 29:

  • Congress has not given authority to DHS to give out EADs.
  • Majority of H4 EAD holders are working in IT sector and taking away American jobs.

My opinion is that SaveJobsUSA is not able to prove their argument in court convincingly at this time. DHS has already conveyed that H4 workers do not impact US economy negatively based on their study.

Federal court has not given any opinion yet. My hopes are high that federal court is going to rule in favor of H4 workers.

ImmigrationVoice Appeal Favors H4-EAD

ImmigrationVoice presented good defense in support of H4 EAD rule on April 8, 2019 in federal court

  • H4EAD does not affect American workers
  • DHS had full authority to give H4 work authorization as per law
  • H4 EAD add to federal and state taxes
  • H4 EAD is important for H1B families to help them economically sustain in USA

DHS says H4 EAD not affecting US workers

DHS informed Federal court on Apr 1, 2019 that H4 EAD program does not affect job competition in US job market based on their economic analysis.

The acceptance that H4 EAD does not affect American jobs is a win for H1B spouses along with a big blow to SaveJobsUSA’s case. It might be a hint that DHS may have something good for H4 EAD in their kitty. Only time will tell.

EAD Revoke Rule details

H4EAd revoke rules will be available as and when OMB publishes them for public comments. DHS submitted the revoke rules to OMB for review on Feb 20.

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!

H4-EAD Withdrawal Survey – 14k responses

The survey’s 14K responses reveal that H1b skilled people are getting ready to get Canada or Australia PR.

Will H1B family move to Canada if H4 EAD is withdraw
Will H1B family move to Canada if H4 EAD is withdraw

Find the mood of H1B, H4EAD community. Google account required to fill survey.
Open H4 EAD withdrawal survey in a new window.

Is H4 EAD still valid?

H4EAD is still valid. You can apply for new H4-EAD and H4-EAD renewals at this time. USCIS is actively processing H4-EAD applications within 2-3 months. Apply 180 days before your current H4 EAD card expiry to get full 3 year validity.

Will H4 EAD be valid after DHS Termination?

Existing H4 EAD cards will remain valid after revocation. DHS is expected to stop the issuance of new cards and renewals.

H4 EAD News Timeline

  1. Sep 26, 2018 – U.S. Senators Kamala D. Harris (D-CA) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) letter to USCISUSCIS reply (on last page) – Oct 16, 2018.
  2. Aug 23, 2018 – Business Roundtable letter supporting H4 EAD signed by Apple, ADP, American Airlines, Pepsi, Coca-Cola among other CEOs.
  3. Aug 20, 2018DHS to Federal Court – No intention of backing off on H4 EAD withdrawal.
  4. May 16, 2018 – 130 bipartisan congress members signed letter of support.

Recent discussion on forum

  1. Vamsi_Krishna_Maring

    With the confusion around H4 EAD, is it advisable to apply for H4 EAD. I got my I140 approved last week and planning to apply for EAD.

    Please let me know your thoughts

  2. Anil.Gupta

    Hi @Vamsi_Krishna_Maring

    Do not worry about the H4 EAD news at this time. Nothing is final and this drama is going on for last 2 years.

    I strongly advise to apply for H4 EAD if you are eligible.

  3. divya_nathan

    Hi Anil,
    I am currently on an H1B valid till Dec 2019. Since my employer has decided not to go ahead with my PERM filing, I plan to go to India for an H4 stamping in Aug once my husband’s I140 is ready. Do you think it is still a viable option for me to apply for an EAD sometime in Sept 2019?
    Please advise.

  4. Anil.Gupta

    Hi @divya_nathan

    H4 EAD is available until it is finally removed. You can file it.

Comments are closed. Ask question on Forum (we answer in 1-24 hour)

  224 Useful Questions & Answers

  1. Chengda Zhang
    Chengda Zhang 24 Feb, 19 at 8:07 pm

    Hi, when you say OMB will wrap up within 30 days, can you provide a reference to a government policy which states that any economically significant draft needs to be done within 30 days?


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 24 Feb, 19 at 8:21 pm

      I don’t have the link to share at this time. You can search on Google.


      • Chengda Zhang
        Chengda Zhang 25 Feb, 19 at 11:18 pm

        I tried to reply you with a link, but i guess it won’t allow me. What i found is 84 days on average for economically significant drafts.


      • Chengda Zhang
        Chengda Zhang 25 Feb, 19 at 6:45 pm

        What I found from Google is the average processing time for economically significant draft is 84 days. https://fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/R43056.pdf Table 5


        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 26 Feb, 19 at 8:51 am

          That’s an average. What I have mentioned is the legal obligation time for OMB. They may decide to give full 90 days or may just give 30 days as comments period.

          It all depends on them.


  2. Rakesh
    Rakesh 23 Feb, 19 at 8:24 pm

    Hi Anil,
    Can you please suggest any form how to oppose H4 EAD rules. I strongly believe this constitutional illegal and every US citizen must oppose it.


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 24 Feb, 19 at 12:10 am

      Everybody in the general public will get a chance to share their views and comments once OMB publishes the rules for ‘Public comments’. You can share your views at that time.


      • livin
        livin 24 Feb, 19 at 8:37 pm

        Hi Anil, Can you point out if if the comments are in any way binding in the process? In the case of Overwhelming support for the status quo, can the DHS still go ahead with the revoking and can the case be filed in that case based on DHS going against majority opinion?


        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 24 Feb, 19 at 8:51 pm

          There is no binding on DHS. Comments are for giving an opportunity for general public to share their opinion. As per past experiences, DHS does consider all comments seriously and they do change or modify their published rules based on comments.

          But, the final decision on what rules to keep and what to leave stay with government agency.


  3. Tarun Arora
    Tarun Arora 22 Feb, 19 at 11:41 pm

    Hi Anil

    1)Fastest Date you have given for the rule to be published is 10th May 2019 .
    Does that mean USCIS will accept the applications prior to this date ? Lets say if somebody files application on 1st May 2019 .What will be the chances of getting EAD in this case ? Assuming it will take 1-2 days for courier service to deliver .

    2)If Lawsuit gets filed against DHS and result doesn’t comes out for some amount of time, During that time when case is pending in court .Will USCIS continue to give out EAD ?


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 23 Feb, 19 at 5:28 am

      The rules of revocation are not known at this time and hence nothing can be said with surety.
      A lawsuit may be filed and it may block the rule too. You never know.


  4. shanthi
    shanthi 22 Feb, 19 at 8:48 pm

    This is very biased. When L2 visa will get L2 EAD for spouses why cant H1B visa get the same. Is L2 EAD folks not taking jobs?Also if jobs data show there are more jobs why H4 EAD became economically significant. The main reason is backlog why are more applications accepted if there is a backlog of 150+ years. Country quota shouldn’t be at the final stage the, it should be a initial application stage instead. Please fix the rules first instead than taking hard working peoples job who are legal and paying taxes and following rules. At one stage president is stating he accepts more legal immigrants. But he is on other hand making life of legal immigrants hard. If other countries (Canada, Europe) have spouse EAD why is US removing it now?


  5. Akhil Ramakrishnan
    Akhil Ramakrishnan 22 Feb, 19 at 4:58 pm

    Hi Anil, will H1 & H4 holders get a chance to provide feedback once the rules are posted to the public for comments or is this something only citizens can do? If we can comment, where do we do it?


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 22 Feb, 19 at 5:42 pm

      Anybody can provide feedback including citizens and non-citizens. I am expecting thousands of comments as there are more than 100k H4 EAD holders and majority of them are from India.


  6. hjh
    hjh 22 Feb, 19 at 11:34 am

    What is going to happen to Immigration voice’s law suit


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 22 Feb, 19 at 3:28 pm

      The lawsuit may carry on in parallel. If DHS finally revokes H4 EAD, then the current court case will be nullified.
      I am pretty sure someone will file a lawsuit against DHS decision too.


      • SK
        SK 22 Feb, 19 at 3:43 pm

        Any idea when Immigration Voice has their next hearing in court?


        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 22 Feb, 19 at 5:42 pm

          I don’t have the date at the top of my head but it is most probably Mar 16, 2019. Date may be wrong though. Getting older and losing my memory fast!


  7. Preeya Surendran
    Preeya Surendran 22 Feb, 19 at 10:52 am

    At this point what will happen to the pending H4 EAD renewal – it has been more than 3 months – I have been holding job offer also..


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 22 Feb, 19 at 3:28 pm

      Your pending H4 EAD application can still be approved as the DHS has not published the final H4 EAD revoke yet in federal register. It can take 6 months to year for the final rules to come out.

      Don’t worry.


  8. MK
    MK 21 Feb, 19 at 6:46 pm

    My Wife was on H1B and moved to H4 EAD. Does it makes sense to wait till EAD expiry and then apply for H1B visa status change in this scenario ?


    • Mk
      Mk 21 Feb, 19 at 6:46 pm

      @spot_anil_gupta:disqus What do you think is the best case in this scenario ?


      • Anil Gupta
        Anil Gupta 21 Feb, 19 at 9:00 pm

        I think you can keep using H4 EAD for now. But, whenever you get a chance, it would be better to move to H1B as that would be a safe option keeping in mind that DHS can remove H4 EAD anytime.


  9. Sri
    Sri 21 Feb, 19 at 6:09 pm

    My H4 EAD got approved till 2022. Can I still work on EAD though DHS finalized revoking rule in next 6 months? Does it impact already issued ones also?


    • Sunlight
      Sunlight 21 Feb, 19 at 7:36 pm

      Of course you can work in next 6 months, they didn’t make final decision yet.


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 21 Feb, 19 at 9:00 pm

      You can keep working as long as DHS does not publish the rule finally in federal register. Also, the expectation is that the current approved and valid H4 EADs will be allowed to use their validity period.


  10. Akshata
    Akshata 21 Feb, 19 at 5:05 pm

    Hi Anil,
    We have recently applied for h4 and ead through concurrent filing along with H1 extension. Is there any hope that EAD will get approved by USCIS after today’s rule which is published? I am hoping that they will let people work untill the expiry of H4 EAD.


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 21 Feb, 19 at 9:00 pm

      At this time, the rule is still under review. The final H4 EAD revocation will take time and till that time, your H4 EAD application can be approved.


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