US: Spouses of H1-B visa holders to be granted automatic work permits

The move will benefit tens of thousands of Indian-American women

By Web Desk

  • Follow us on
  • google-news
  • whatsapp
  • telegram

Top Stories

Reuters file
Reuters file

Published: Fri 12 Nov 2021, 9:42 AM

Last updated: Fri 12 Nov 2021, 10:15 AM

The Biden administration has agreed to provide automatic work authorisation permits to spouses of immigrant workers in the US.

The move will benefit tens of thousands of Indian-American women. The settlement was reached by the Department of Homeland Security in a class-action lawsuit filed by the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) on behalf of immigrant spouses this summer.

A US court also directed the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to allow up to 180 days of automatic extension on work authorisation permits for spouses of H1-B and L-1 visa holders.

This means spouses with expired H-4 visas don't have to worry if their applications are not processed in a timely manner.

The goal of the lawsuit was to remove hurdles in policies that posed many challenges for spouses and caused them to lose their jobs.


The Obama administration had earlier given work authorisation to certain categories of spouses of H-1B visa holders.

So far, more than 90,000 H-4 visa holders, a significant majority of whom are Indian-American women, have received work authorisation, according to The Indian Express.

More news from