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Special Article: 'H4 Visa Saga'

Special Article: 'H4 Visa Saga'

In April of 2018, the former USCIS director Francis Cissna informed congress that USCIS intends to publish a rule to remove H4 EAD authorization. This issue has transformed into a tv soap series kind of drama after that.

A lawsuit was filed by Save Jobs USA requesting a federal judge to strike out the H4 EAD authorization immediately. USCIS filed several motions in the court that they do not want to litigate this issue with Save Jobs USA as they were soon going to publish a rule in the federal register authorizing USCIS to revoke the H4 EAD.

However, USCIS has maintained that they did not have time to publish the final rule even after two years as they were busy with policymaking of other issues.

A pro-immigration group suddenly filed a petition in the court stating that they are also a party to this case. It seemed that pro-immigrant group intended to monitor the case and make sure that USCIS and SaveJobsUSA were following all the required protocols in the court and to prevent USCIS from making any off the court settlements with SaveJobsUSA and unjustly revoke the H4 EAD without following proper court procedure or federal register publishing guidelines.

H4 EAD can be withdrawn anytime by publishing a rule in the federal register by USCIS. The judge may rule in favor of Save Jobs USA and make H4 EAD’s invalid. The chance of the judge ruling in favor of Save Jobs USA is very slim in 2020.

USCIS may publish a rule in the federal register but H1B and H4 extension can be filed 6 months before expiry and most H-1B and H4 extensions are due in October 2020. Hence most H4 EAD’s will be extended till October 2022 or later.

Instead of focusing on the negative aspects of the situation H4 EAD holders should renew their EAD as soon as possible and look for an H-1B friendly employer and file their H-1B in March 2020 H-1B lottery. This way they are protected against decisions by USCIS or the federal judge in the SaveJobs USA lawsuit.

It was difficult for an H4 visa holder to find a job in a specialty occupation like software developer as most of them would like to work within a commutable distance from home. Now companies are accepting remote employers (also known as telecommute or telework or work from home) in 2020 due to the increasing shortage of IT workers.

The remote employee market has picked up rapidly from Q2 of 2019. One reason is the booming stock market. NASDAQ is almost near to 10,000 points. Companies are rapidly expanding because of the infusion of cash flow from the stock market. The second reason is the shortage of experienced IT professionals.

The H-1B quota has not increased and most companies want experienced IT professionals and not the entry-level computer science graduates. Hence, employers are now more open to hiring employees and contractors remotely.

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Press release by: Indian Clicks, LLC

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