US President Joe Biden Allows H-1B Visa Holders’ Spouses to Work

The move will impact a large number of Indians who constitute more than two-thirds of the recipients of the visas.

1 min read
Hindi Female

A week after his inauguration, US President Joe Biden has allowed work authorisations for the spouses of those with H-1B work visa.

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) said on Monday, 25 January that the Trump administration’s proposal to remove dependent spouses of H4 visa from authorised employment has been withdrawn, reported PTI.

The H-1B visa is a work permit that allows foreigners to work for companies in the United States in ‘specialised roles’ that domestic workers can’t fulfil. The H-4 visa is issued to spouses and children of H-1B visa holders waiting to become permanent residents.

Apart from holders of H-1B visas, the move will also impact Indian workers holding H-4 visas, a number as high as 80 percent of all H-4 visas every year. Ninety percent of H-4 visa-holders who will be affected are women, The Independent reported.

The provision for employment under the H-4 visa was introduced by the Obama administration in 2015, in an effort to attract more foreign talent and retain existing talent.

After the rule was implemented, a group called Save Jobs USA, formed by IT workers who claimed they’d lost their jobs to H-1B visa holders, staged protests against the provision, filing a lawsuit against the rule stating that H-4 visa holders were taking even more jobs away from US workers.

The Department of Homeland Security said the review of the rule comes as part of Trump’s “Buy American, Hire American” executive order.

(With inputs from PTI and The Independent)

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Topics:  Immigration   Trump   H1-B Visa 

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