H4 EAD Premium Processing Still Waiting for USCIS RuleMaking

USCIS premium processing will be available for H4, L2, EAD, F1, and EB1-C i-140 applications. Fee varies from $1500-$2500. Processing time 15 to 45 days.

Written by Anil Gupta
  Anil Gupta    Updated  8 Jun, 21

The H4 EAD premium processing is not yet available even though the bill was passed in congress last year (2020).

The USCIS needs to go through the rule making process to fix the EAD premium processing fee.

We know that almost all H4 EAD applicants are eagerly waiting for it as they just want to save their hard-earned jobs even if they have to pay an extra fee for the approvals within 6 months. At this time, many people just file an EAD lawsuit court case which itself costs about $3-4k.

H4 EAD premium processing Bill

The Senate had passed the HR 8337 bill which adds Premium Processing service for H4 and L2 extensions including H4 EAD and L2 EAD applications.

This is a welcome step and will provide relief to many who are otherwise on the mercy of the USCIS officers to approve their EAD expedite request.

You can now just pay the money instead of begging for timely approval of your EAD.

Premium processing will now be available for:

  • i539, i-765 (EAD) – Employment-based primary and their dependents like H1B and L1 dependents.
  • All EB1, EB2, and EB3 i-140 including EB-1C multinational executives and managers, and EB-2 national interest waivers can now get the result faster by paying a premium fee.
  • Change of status applications like F1 to H4 or vice versa, H1B to H4 COS, and other such combinations will have premium processing service.

The new H1B and L1 premium fee will be $2500.

The fee will vary from $1500 to $2500 for other type of applications.

Biometric Appointment in Premium Processing Cases?

The clever part is that the premium processing timeline will not start until all the prerequisite steps for approving an application are completed.


  • H4 and L2 extension’s premium processing timer will not start until the primary’s H1B or L1 extension has been approved.
  • Similarly, the biometric appointment will also be a major hurdle in the H4/L2 extension’s premium timeline.

USCIS should share more details on how the premium processing will work for H4, L2, and F extension cases when the biometric is an important step in the middle.

Pay one Premium fee for H1B, H4, EAD by filing together?

It is not clear if USCIS will allow one single premium processing fees together for primary and dependent applications.

It would be great if they can give a bundle price for premium processing of all three applications together like H1B + H4 + H4 EAD.

Back in the pre-biometric days, USCIS used to show big heart and approve H4 and H4 EAD along with H1B premium as a goodwill gesture.

We will update here if new information is made available for this.


When will the H4 EAD premium processing service start?

USCIS should announce the date of the premium processing service start for the new types of applications soon.

The bill has just passed Senate on Sep 30, 2020. We expect the announcement to be made in 7-10 days after the president signs it.

Will the premium processing time be 15 days?

The maximum fee and processing time for EB-1C (multinational executives and managers) would be $2500 and 45 days respectively.

The change of status to F, J, and M fee will be a maximum of $1750 and will be processed within 30 days.

The extension or change of status to E, H, L, O, P, or R, will carry a cost of $1750 and the processing should be completed within 30 days.

The good news is that premium processing for EADs (H4 and L2 EAD included) will cost $1500 to get approval within 30 days.

This is much better than filing court litigations or losing the job.

Can I upgrade my pending H4 EAD application to premium processing?

You should be able to upgrade your existing pending H4 and H4 EAD applications to premium once the USCIS starts accepting it.


Written by Anil Gupta
  Anil Gupta           

Recent discussion on forum

  1. Karthik_Devaraja


    Any idea when this will in effect. I have y wife h4 pending for 4 months. She will lose job in another 2 months

  2. Aneesha

    Hi Anil,
    Can we expect this to be implemented soon or would it take months for USCIS to implement this?

  3. mvb

    So does this also mean that if anyone has to extend H4+EAD the fees are expected to be total $1750+$1500 and the duration be 30+30 total days? Thanks

  4. Rajk

    Just saw this status for the bill. Signed by President on 1st october.

  5. cutinhas

    My L2/EAD Extention was filed on 5/13 and biometrics applied on 7/23. However, since then both the cases haven’t moved any further. What are my chances of getting these approved at the earliest as my EAD expires on 10/10? When will this good news go into effect?

  6. cutinhas

    I’ve seen numerous posts where the dependents are patiently waiting to receive extension and EAD approvals. I’m one of them too and know what kind of anxiety has affected the peace of mind and everything we do! Hence sending this little positive thought for all of us, “may all those who are eagerly waiting for the dependent extensions and EADs be given a very good news shortly of approvals to save their jobs as USCIS employees are touched by the angel of mercy and are able to clear the backlog miraculously, may their hearts and lives be blessed.”

  7. apps.sarva

    Hello Anil

    In USCIS News they are not mentioned anywhere about they are not accepting Premium processing for H4 & L2 EAD starting from OCT 19 with the Fee increase of 1440 to 2500.

    How are you confirming H4 and L2 EAD primium process is not yet started and it takes in months.

    Based on my understanding, new HR Bill is allowed to increase the primium processing and fees hike up to DEC 11 2020 to meet interim financial stopgap for continued uscis operation

    Please Confirm your latest update about H4 and L2 EAD Premium Processing start delay for months


  8. Hg5628

    Any idea when USCIS will start accepting h4 and ead under premium processing?

  9. Anu_R

    Hi Anil,

    One of my friend is currently on H-1B VISA and planning to move to H4 (in COS). He has already filed the H4 (form – I-539) in September 2020 and got the receipt.

    Now he is waiting for the biometrics and then H4 approval. He also has a plan to apply EAD once the H4 is approved. Does anyone know how much time H4 approval is taking nowadays.

    There is a news from USCIS that after Dec 11th, 2020, H4-EAD can be filed in premium processing.

    Now the question is if he applies for EAD in premium processing (before H4 approval), will H4 be also considered in premium as he is going to file H4 EAD in premium and should expect both H4 and EAD to be approved in 15-30 days after applying EAD in premium processing ?


  10. Nagendra_C

    Hi Anu_R,

    Could you please let me know from where you got to know the news about the H4-EAD premium processing dates (Dec 11th,2020).


  11. morningsun

    Does anyone know if USCIS has started the premium processing for H4 and H4 EAD after the announcement that came few weeks back . I already filed my H4 & EAD in Aug, and would like to know if I can bump my case to premium now.

  12. rimpi19

    Anyone here tried

  13. cutinhas

    Thought of sharing the good work AILA is doing. Please take action and sign this petition so that USCIS moves our cases faster - AILA - AILA’s Advocacy Action Center

  14. neethus_87

    Hi Anil,

    Do you know when USCIS start accepting h4 and Ead in premium processing?

  15. Keshava_Prasad

    In Oct USCIS announced that H4/L2 EAD processing is available in premium processing, is that implemented so we can start applying

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