H4 EAD update – Hearing in a Washington D.C courthouse
H4 EAD update Dec 31st 2017. On the other side of new year, thousands of H4 EAD worker’s life hangs on the edge. A crucial case filed by Save Jobs USA challenging employment authorization for H4 visa holders comes up for hearing and a Washington D.C court room will decide the fate of thousands of workers. Click here to read more on H4 EAD
Who are H4 EAD workers?
H4 visa holders are H1B worker’s spouses. H1B visas allow foreign workers, generally with bachelor’s degrees or higher, to work for three years at a time. H1B visa holders often in technology, fashion, healthcare and education sectors.
How the new administration changed everything?
A group of IT workers called Save Jobs USA claimed they lost their jobs to H1B workers and their spouses. They filed a court case to overturn the rule that allowed certain H-4 spouses to apply for work authorization. However, Save jobs USA met with initial failure. But in 2017, United States elected the new administration. One of the main agendas of the new administration turned out to be reducing immigration.
The new administration slowly focused its attention on dismantling immigration step by step. First came DACA, then they targeted H1B visa tech workers by issuing more RFEs. In addition, unable to implement a viable travel ban the administration started targeting low hanging fruits. One such fruit is H4 EAD, which ties in neatly with the anti-immigrant agenda.
Systematic dismantling of legal immigration
The new administration has methodically issued rules and regulations starting with the buy american, hire american executive order. In addition, they rejected DACA applications citing late submissions. Issued more paperwork for H1B visas through RFEs. Now the administration wants to cancel H4 EAD.
The latest statistics from USCIS show that there are 104,750 H4 EAD workers. However, not all the visa holders work. Some are H1B workers who shifted status to H4 due to family reasons like maternity or health related issues. And most of these dependents were on track to get a green card. But thanks to long wait times. Instead of getting a green card they were stuck on a dependent visa that had zero working rights in the US. However, Obama administration came to a conclusion that long green card wait times was unfair and the EAD rule came into place.
The show down
The DHS released a notification of proposed rule for rescinding H-4 EAD. This put out a note signalling the possible dead end that looms: “DHS is proposing to remove from its regulations certain H-4 spouses of H-1B non immigrants as a class of aliens eligible for employment authorization. In addition, the note was marked “economically significant”. Stakes are high on both sides. Save Jobs USA is hoping for a cancellation of the H4 visa acknowledging that the original employment authorization itself was against the law. For H4 visa holders who took up paid work, a negative decision will set them and their families back. For now, their life hangs on the edge and we can only hope justice takes its course.
Current Status :
Court is yet to give a decision on the arguments filed by both. We will keep you posted. Meanwhile you can read about the arguments here : H4 EAD Update and the last argument put forth by DHS.