United States Proposes to Revoke Rule Allowing Spouses of H1-B Visa Holders to Work

The move is in accordance with the Trump administration's 'Buy American, Hire American' policy.


The spouses of H1-B, high-skilled, visa holders may not be allowed to work in the United States as the Trump administration plans on proposing to revoke the permits of work of H-4 visa holders in a statement issued on Dec.15, reports The Economic Times.

The rule brought in during the former U.S. President Barrack Obama’s regime allowed spouses of H1-B visa holders to work in the United states on H-4 dependent visas. The notice that was titled Removing H-4 Dependent Spouses from the Class of Aliens Eligible for Employment Authorization had been posted on Dec. 14.

The notice was a part of its Unified Agenda, a bi-annual list of regulations by various federal agencies.

“DHS is proposing to remove from its regulations certain H-4 spouses ofH-1B nonimmigrants as a class of aliens eligible for employment authorization,” the statement said.

The US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in a statement said that the rule may be discontinued and did not divulge details behind why the decision was taken. It detailed that the move is in accordance with the Trump administration’s policy of ‘Buy American, Hire American’.

The statement further added that it also intends to make other changes to the H-1B visa program and may narrow the definition of which professions will be eligible for the visa program “done to increase focus on truly obtaining the best and brightest foreign nationals.”

If the notice is successfully implemented by the Trump administration, it will impact thousands of Indian H1-B workers who work and live in the United States. It will also impact a small percentage of H1-B visa holders who were hoping to get a Green card.

In February 2015, the Obama government in a ruling began allowing spouses of H-1B visa-holders to work in the United States on H-4 visa as dependents. This demand of the industry was long pending and was meant to reduce the burden on the immigrants.

“We continue to work with the U.S. authorities to share the perspective on the kind of impact that this can have and its possible implications said R Chandrashekhar, president of Indian IT industry body Nasscom, reported The Economic Times.

The debate of H-4 visa was sparked by a lawsuit in April 2015 filed by “Save Jobs USA,” a group of computer-industry workers who claimed that their jobs had been taken by foreign-born employees.

This year in February, the U.S. government had asked for a 60-day pause to allow the new administration to assess the case. In April, U.S. President Trump signed the “Buy American, Hire American” executive order and promised to bring jobs back to the United States.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *