US District Court Permits Spouses of H1-B Visa Holders To Work, Rejects Lawsuit

The court ruling is welcome news for foreign workers with jobs in the US tech industry.

1 min read
Hindi Female

A US district court has ruled that spouses of people having H1-B visas can work in the country.

The decision was made on Tuesday, 28 March, by the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia in the matter of a lawsuit filed by Save Jobs USA.

  • The lawsuit challenged government regulations that made way for employment authorisation cards to be issued to the spouses of certain categories of H-1B visa holders

  • Big tech companies such as Amazon and Google had come out against the lawsuit

Why it matters: The court ruling is welcome news for foreign workers with jobs in the US tech industry. So far, over 1,00,000 work permits have reportedly been issued to spouses of H-1B workers, many of them Indians.


In the courtroom: Based on arguments from both sides, the bone of contention, primarily, was a question of authorisation.

  • Save Jobs USA reportedly argued that the US Congress has never granted the federal government to allow foreign nationals, like H-4 visa-holders, to work during their stay in the country

Yes, but: The text of the Immigration and Nationality Act, decades of executive-branch practice and both explicit and implicit congressional ratification of that practice say otherwise, according to Judge Tanya Chutkan.

Congress has expressly and knowingly empowered the US government to authorise employment as a permissible condition of an H-4 spouse's stay in the United States, Judge Tanya Chutkan reportedly wrote in her decision

Meanwhile, Save Jobs USA said that it plans to appeal against the court ruling.

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Topics:   United States   H1-B workers   US Visa 

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