Apply H4 EAD while H1B or H4 Extension is Pending

Apply H4-EAD based on pending H1B or H4 extension pending. Use pending H1B extension receipt number in Q29. H4 EAD will be approved after H1B approval.

Am22tech
  By Am22tech    Updated  27 Apr, 20


Can I apply H4 EAD based on pending H1B or H4 extension?

You can apply H4-EAD based on pending H1B or H4 extension pending.

What Receipt number to write in Q29 on form I-765?

You should write the most recent H1B extension receipt number on the H4 EAD i765 form in question 29. This can be the pending and not yet approved H1B extension receipt number.

This is NOT the I-140 approval receipt number.

What i94 number should be written on form I-765?

You should write your most recent H4’s i94 number. The paper i94 is attached to your H4 approval i797 if you got an h4 extension last time.

Complete process to apply for H4-EAD along with pre-filled I 765 form is available here.

i797 number of form i-765:

H4 EAD i797 receipt number
H4 EAD i797 receipt number

H4 i94 number on I-765 form:

H4 EAD i94 number
H4 EAD i94 number

Send H4 Biometric Receipt?

You can send the H4 Biometric receipt if you have already finished giving your fingerprints before filing this H4 EAD application.

Biometric appointment paper stamped-after fingerprints and photo
Biometric appointment paper stamped after fingerprints and photo

Will H4 EAD be issued with H4 Pending Extension?

H4 EAD needs an approved H1B and an approved H4 to be approved.

You are allowed to file H4 EAD using your pending H4 extension though.
Recently, we have seen that USCIS approves H4 EAD first and then H4 within 1-2 days.

Many people have reported that their H4 EAD status changed to “New card is being produced” when the H4 extension status still shows as “Case was received”. But, within a matter of 1-2 days, the H4 approval comes through.

Is H1B approval Affected By H4 Biometric?

H1B approval is not affected or delayed by H4 Biometrics. H4 approval is dependent on H1B and not vice versa.

Can We Travel while H4 EAD is pending?

You can travel while H4 EAD is pending. But, there are chances of getting an RFE to prove your H4 status if your H4 extension is pending too.

File Multiple H4 EAD Applications?

You can file as many H4 EAD applications as you want if you have the money.

We cover multiple situations where you may be confused as to file another H4 and h4 EAD while one set of applications are still pending result from USCIS.

#1 H1B Transfer with H4, H4 EAD pending

Many people have a situation where they have filed H4 and H4 EAD applications with their H1B extension. Once their H1B extension has been approved, they want to file H1B transfer even though their H4 and H4 EAD are still pending due to lengthy processing time after biometrics.

In this case, there is no need to file a new H4 and H4 EAD with your H1B transfer. The H4 and H4 EAD are not employer-specific and hence can be approved even when you have left your old employer.

#2 H4 EAD pending and H1B Extension time approaching

It is possible that you applied for H4 EAD recently when your primary H1B’s current validity was just about 6 months to 1 year. In this case, your current H4 EAD application may be pending while its time to file for H1B and H4 extension.

In this case, you can file another H4 EAD application while your current one is still pending.

  • You will need to choose the option 1.a. “Initial permission to accept employment” on form I-765 question 1:
H4 EAD file again while current application is pending
H4 EAD file again while current application is pending
  • and say ‘yes’ on question 12 “have you previously filed Form I-765”.

Remember that if you ever had H4 EAD earlier, you should select option 1.C and attach the earlier EAD copy with your application package.

Can I file H4 extension while H1B extension is pending?

You can file your H4 extension (Form i539) using your spouse’s pending H1B extension’s receipt number.

Note that H4 will only be approved after the H1B is approved though.

If you file multiple H4 applications, you will need to attend separate Biometric appointments for each H4 application.

Read this recent experience shared by our guest when they filed an H4 extension and then another H4 with H1B transfer and attended two separate biometric appointments.


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