The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services just announced that the Department of Homeland Security will now accept applications for employment authorization from certain H-4 dependent spouses of highly skilled foreign H-1B nonimmigrants, who are seeking lawful, permanent resident status based on their employment. Individuals can apply for employment authorization under the H-4 rule if their H-1B nonimmigrant spouse is the principal beneficiary of an approved Form I-140, an Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker, or has been granted H-1B status under sections 106(a) and (b) of the American Competitiveness in the Twenty-First Century Act of 2000. Immigration Services hopes that this move will help retain talented and valuable professionals, so that they can contribute to the U.S. economy.