H4 EAD Sample Form I-765, Documents Required

H4 EAD sample I765 form, document checklist, fees $410. Renew 180 days before expiry. H1B primary i129 - I797 receipt required. Processing time 2-7 month.

Written by Anil Gupta
  By Anil Gupta          Updated  9 Dec, 19


H4 EAD is an H4 Employment Authorization Document (EAD) that allows H4 visa holders to work legally in H4 EAD jobs without any employer or location restriction in USA.

Documents for H4 EAD Application

#1 H4-EAD Fees check

H4 EAD fees check for $410 payable to ‘U.S. Department of Homeland Security‘. Short forms like USCIS not allowed on personal or cashier or money order.

EAD fees can be paid by credit card.

#2 Photo

2 identical 2×2 inch photographs 2×2 Inch clicked within last 30 days. Write your NAME and i94 number (OR SSN OR Alien registration number) on the back of the photograph with a light gray colored pencil.

Do not send old photo with I-765 application as it increases change of RFE.

#3 Form G1145 (Optional but recommended)

Use G1145 to let USCIS send you an SMS or an email once they receive your application. Attach this form at top of the EAD application package.

#4 Form I-765

Application for Employment Authorization. Sample I-765 form for H4-EAD is given below.

#5 H4 Status Proof
  • Copy of H-4 visa holder’s MOST RECENT I-797 Approval. If an H4 extension has been done recently, use the extension approval. OR
  • Most recent i-94 copy. If extension approved recently, the NEW i94 would be attached with your H4 extension approval (i797).
#6 Government-issued ID document with photo
  • Copy of Passport’s front (with Photo) and back pages (with address) OR
  • Copy of USA H4 Visa stamp page from Passport OR
  • A copy of your last EAD – Both front and back (if any) OR
  • A birth certificate with photo ID. Example, Indian (or Chinese) birth certificate will work only if it has a photograph on it. OR
  • Any other national identity document with photo. US State ID or Driving License is NOT acceptable.
#7 Relationship to the H-1B nonimmigrant

Copy of the marriage certificate issued in your country in English is required to prove H4 dependent’s relationship to primary H1B.

#8 H4 EAD eligibility proof

Primary H1B spouse’s I-140 i797c approval notice. If your employer has not shared I-140 approval copy with you, use USCIS FOIA request to get I-140 details.

#9 Current H4-EAD copy

Existing EAD copy is required only if you already have H4 EAD and you are applying for renew or extension

Only BLACK color ink pen is allowed as USCIS uses computer scanning to read forms.

Do NOT staple the documents. Use a paper clip to bind them together.

i765 Sample form for New H4 EAD

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Documents for H4-EAD Renewal Application

The document list is the same for H4 EAD renewal or extension as for new H4-EAD application mentioned above.

Sample H4 EAD Renewal i765 form

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It is possible that the START date for this extension is in future.

If your H4 expires in Sep, and you applied for renewal in Mar, same year, it is possible that your extended H4’s start date is Sep instead of March.
It is on USCIS to give a current start date or future one (that correlates with your current H4’s expiry date).

For the sake of filling up the i-765 form, we would consider the most recent H4 approval irrespective of its start date.
Based on it, your i94 number and primary H1B i797 approval receipt number will be decided while filing i765.

What is H4 EAD Processing Time?

Current H4 EAD processing time is 2 to 7 months. It changes every month with each USCIS service center.

What is H4 EAD eligibility Category?

H4 EAD Eligibility category code is C(26).

How Much Time It Takes To get EAD Card After ‘new Card is Being Produced’ Status?

You will receive your EAD card within 1-7 working days after New Card is Being Produced case status.

Which Receipt Number to Write in Question 29 on H4 EAD form?

Write H1B primary’s most recent I-797 receipt number on H4 EAD application form I-765 question 29.
This is not the I-140 approval receipt number.

Which i94 Number Should Be Written On H4 EAD form?

You should write i94 number from the most recent H4 approval (i797 form) on H4 EAD application form Question 21a.
Use this start date even if it is in the future without any issue.

What is Reason of Applying H4 EAD?

Choose option 1.a. for Question 1 on H4 EAD form if you are applying EAD for the first time.
For H4-EAD renewal applications, choose renewal option as 1.c.
If you had any kind of EAD before (like L2-EAD), then you can consider H4 EAD as new EAD.

When can We Apply for H4 EAD Renewal?

You can apply for H4 EAD renewal 180 days before current EAD card expiry.
USCIS allows to file H4 EAD with H1B Amendment and H1B transfer applications even if the current card is valid for more than 180 days.

What is Place of Last Arrival into the US in Question 23 on form I-765?

You should write the name of the Airport or border that you used to enter US.
For some people, this airport might be a non-US airport like Abu Dhabi where they complete the US immigration process at Abu-Dhabi airport itself.
I would suggest writing either the “Port of Entry/Exit” as “MAA – ABU DHABI INTL” or the name of the US airport where you landed first.

For example, if you landed in Washington Airport after completing the immigration process at Abu Dhabi airport, your i94 record will show the “MAA – ABU DHABI INTL” as the port of entry.
You can then either write “Washington Airport” or “MAA – ABU DHABI INTL”.

What is Question 28 for Spouse Eligibility Degree On Form I-765 for H4 EAD?

You can write ‘N/A’ or leave blank for H4 EAD applications.

Can I file H4 EAD while H4 Extension is Pending?

You can file H4 EAD while H4 Extension is pending.

Can I travel While H4 EAD is Pending?

You can travel while H4 EAD is pending. There are some risks associated with travel though.

Can H4 EAD Work if Current Card Expired and Extension Is Pending?

H4 EAD cannot work if current card has expired and extension is pending.
Automatic 180 day EAD extension is not allowed for H4 EAD.

Can H4 EAD Start a Business?

H4 EAD allows you to open a business with no restrictions.
Many people take franchise option. A small business insurance is highly recommended if you want to protect your investment.

H4 EAD USCIS Mailing Address

Check the USCIS address to mail H4 EAD application using H1B’s receipt number.

SSN with i-765 Form

If you do not currently have SSN, select ‘No’ on Q 13.a. and then select ‘Yes’ on Q 14 and Q 15.
You will have to fill Q 16.a., 16.b. with your (H4’s) father and mother name to get SSN card.

Your SSN card will be automatically generated after your EAD is approved within 3-4 weeks mailed by USPS.

Forms USA

Recent discussion on forum

  1. mvb

    Hi Anil,
    Recently updated i94 after passport renewal by visiting San Diego border. For section ‘Information about your last arrival’ in i-765 form, I have entered the latest i94 number and mentioned ‘San Ysirdo’ as ‘Last arrival in U.S.’. Would that work? If not, do we have any specific code for land PoE like the airports?

  2. venkat5121

    this is what I entered, hope it helps…

  3. mvb

    Thanks, that helps. Need to confirm since the sample form had place(city name) entered as oppose to PoE code.

  4. mvb

    Yes, both have same future date. Related Q would be should if latest i94 number is entered does it make more sense to attach latest i-94 instead of H4 i-797 approval copy? Or that doesn’t matter?
    Please confirm

  5. mvb

    Thanks Anil and Venkat, you guys had been great help resolving queries.

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39 more replies

  439 Useful Questions & Answers

  1. Ashok
    Ashok 19 Feb, 18 at 12:13 pm

    HI guys, I would appreciate if I can find the answer to my question here.

    I am applying my wife’s H4 extension and H4 EAD renewal. Can I do them together or not?
    If so should I make packet containing both application, fee and documents and just send them all together.

    Assuming first they will finalize and H4 extension and H4 EAD after that.

    Thanks in advance.

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 19 Feb, 18 at 12:22 pm

      Yes, you can send them in same packet together.

  2. Subhash K
    Subhash K 12 Feb, 18 at 3:14 pm

    Hi Anil,

    I appreciate your detailed post on H4 EAD application process. I am planning to apply for H4 EAD and we did not receive the approved I797 of amended H1b of my spouse. Do we have to wait for it to be included in the application packet ? or can we just mention the approved receipt number in form I-765.
    The H4 visa stamp has a different receipt number(before amendment) on it, we were told by attorneys that we should include even the pay stubs of my spouse and also all the I797’s we have so far along with I140’s I797 but I don’t see all these as required in the official website or in your recommended documents, please suggest.

    Thanks for your time!


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 12 Feb, 18 at 3:47 pm

      Has your spouse filed for H1B amendment or extension? There is a difference between the two.

      If your spouse already has an approved H1B (with long expiry), you can use it to apply for H4-EAD with normal documentary proof as mentioned in above article.

      Did that answer your question?

      • Subhash K
        Subhash K 12 Feb, 18 at 6:06 pm

        Filed for an amendment and got approved on October 20th 2017 but never received a receipt for the same. Attorney applied for an action filing I-824 and asked us to wait until we get a copy of the approval notice to move forward with H4 EAD application. My question is, can we still go ahead apply for EAD just with the receipt number?

        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 12 Feb, 18 at 6:15 pm

          You can apply only with the receipt number but it is always better to have the i-797 approval of notice.
          Your attorney is right in his view to wait as USCIS is un-predictable with these things.

  3. Aneesh
    Aneesh 12 Feb, 18 at 2:20 pm

    Hi Anil,
    I am planning to apply H4 EAD for my wife next week. Both of of our last names mentioned on the marriage certificates doesn’t matches with the one we have it on our passport . For example as per passport my full name is Aneesh Divakar whereas on my marriage certificate it is Aneesh D . Will that be a problem ?

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 12 Feb, 18 at 2:49 pm

      Should not be a problem since your H4 is also granted based on same situation and H4 is a legal dependent too.

      • Aneesh
        Aneesh 13 Feb, 18 at 8:53 am

        Thanks Anil for your prompt response . Greatly appreciated !

        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 13 Feb, 18 at 9:13 am

          You are welcome. Do share the result once you get the EAD approved.

    VASUDHA PREETHI KARANAM 22 Jan, 18 at 2:24 pm

    Hi Anil,
    I have a question regarding my eligibility for H4 EAD and want to be sure that i am eligible to apply. My husband was earlier on H1 B during which Perm was applied. The H1B visa expired and we went back to India. We came to US on a new H1B and after few months the I140 was approved. Am I eligible to apply for H4 EAD.


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 22 Jan, 18 at 2:34 pm

      Yes, you are eligible if you are on H4-visa as a dependent on your spouse’s H1B.

      Here is the criteria applicable in your case:
      1. Spouses of H-1B visa holders who meet the following criteria:
      1.a. Are in valid H-4 status.
      1.b. Are able to provide evidence of the H-1B visa holder’s approved I-140, Immigrant Petition. This I-140 can be from any U.S. employer and must not be revoked or withdrawn;

        VASUDHA PREETHI KARANAM 22 Jan, 18 at 2:41 pm

        Thank you very much for the quick response.

  5. Krishna
    Krishna 18 Jan, 18 at 12:06 am

    Hi Anil ,

    I am applying H4 EAD for my wife . I have H4 and H1 extensions approved and got i797 with i-94 attached . So i am including I797 with i-94 attached in the package .

    1) Still do i need to send i-94 from CBP ?

    FYI … I94 number in i797 and CBP both are same

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 18 Jan, 18 at 8:22 am

      We ask to get the i94 number from CBP website only, if you traveled outside USA after your H1 and H4 extension was approved. This is because, whenever you go out of US and come back, you get a new i94.

      Since, you have not traveled outside, your i94 attached to i-797 will be same as available on CBP website.

      So, there is no need to send two copies. Just one is fine (the one attached to i-797).
      Remember: Only send the copies, do not send the original.

  6. Hari
    Hari 6 Jan, 18 at 12:38 am

    Hi Anil,

    My spouse changed the name in her second arrival to US and should she need to mention the Initial name used in the “Other Names Used” section? Please advise

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 6 Jan, 18 at 9:42 am

      Yes, she should mention her old name.

  7. Niti Nagpal
    Niti Nagpal 21 Dec, 17 at 8:51 am

    Hi Anil, Regarding H4 EAD: I don’t have I-797 copy because I travelled out of country and got my visa stamped through embassy. Is that ok to submit that? and what that called as ? Is that H4 visa stamped or something. I need to write in the covering letter . Thanks!

    • Niti Nagpal
      Niti Nagpal 21 Dec, 17 at 9:11 am

      Also, I was on h1b and worked for 5.5 years. Do I need to submit any document related to my past H1B status. Currently, I am on H4. Thanks!

      • Anil Gupta
        Anil Gupta 21 Dec, 17 at 10:27 am

        No. Your own H1B details are NOT required for H4-EAD.

        Everything you need for H4-EAD is related to your current H4 status and your spouse’s H1B and I140.

        • Niti Nagpal
          Niti Nagpal 21 Dec, 17 at 10:28 am

          Thank you so much for quick response!

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 21 Dec, 17 at 10:26 am

      To prove your H4 status: you can provide your H4-visa stamp and i-94 copy.

      No need to include any covering letter as such. If you do decide to write covering letter, just write in plain language. It’s not required though.

  8. Poojitha
    Poojitha 18 Dec, 17 at 4:05 pm

    My spouse has an active I140 but we don’t have I140 approval copy (old employer doesn’t provide). I want to renew my H4 EAD using my spouse’s “I140 petition with approved stamp”. I heard, we have to demonstrate the inability of the first evidence. Could you provide more detail if we want to renew H-4 EAD using “I140 petition with approved Stamp”.


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 18 Dec, 17 at 9:07 pm

      Hi Poojitha,
      As per the official USCIS guidelines, you can file your H4-EAD with the H1B’s receipt number AND the approved I-140’s receipt number, if you cannot get the original copy of I-140 I-797 form.
      They have not provided any list of documents that you should provide to prove the reason behind non-availability.

      As per my knowledge, you should file with whatever documentation you have. If needed, USCIS will ask for more documentation with RFE (request for more evidence) with concrete list of what they want to see.

      • Poojitha
        Poojitha 20 Dec, 17 at 9:36 am

        Thank You Anil for quick response and I posted with the same I140 petition. I hope it goes fine.

        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 20 Dec, 17 at 2:14 pm

          All the best. You should get it without issues.

  9. raju kumar
    raju kumar 29 Sep, 17 at 9:23 am

    Hello Anil..

    If i am applying first time H4 EAD then in form i-765 we need to fill I-94 number and in case of renewel it would be Uscis # or Alien Number (Printed on EAD card) . right?

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 29 Sep, 17 at 12:56 pm

      i94 number is always i94 number. It is NOT replaced by Alien number.
      Read this instruction carefully for renewal

      Your i94 in case of H4-EAD renewal will be the most recent i94.
      In case you renewed H4 recently, this new i94 comes attached with the H4 approval.
      In case you are filing for H4 renewal and H4-EAD simultaneously, then, leave the i94 field blank as you do not already have it.

  10. Rayofhope
    Rayofhope 18 Sep, 17 at 12:48 am

    Hello Anil…Please help me with my situation…I was on L1 when I arrived in USA…I applied L2 EAD for my wife…She never used it…It got expired, we did not renew it as she was not using EAD…Now, I am on H1…I want apply for my wife’s H4 EAD…I am told that we have to submit the previous EAD copy with the application, if EAD is ever granted…The issue is we lost the EAD card and are not able to find…I only have the file number, WAC…Could you please guide on what should I mention in the 765 form…YES, for EAD applied and granted before and attach the USCIS page showing the decision…or say NO, for EAD applied and granted…Your help is much appreciated…

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 18 Sep, 17 at 6:21 am

      You should say ‘Yes’ to the question and provide the file number.
      It is not advisable to intentionally write ‘No’ even if you have lost the documents. USCIS is pretty strict with checking what you mention on the application form and hence, whatever information you have is good enough, than to say ‘No’.