The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will published a final rule that will extend eligibility for employment authorization to H-4 dependent spouses of H-1B nonimmigrants who are seeking employment based lawful permanenta resident status. The final rule will allow H-4 spouses to apply for work authorization in cases where the principal H-1B worker has an approved I-140 petition or is qualified for benefits under the American Competitiveness in the Twenty-First Century Act of 2000, as amended by the 21st Century Department of Justice Appropriations Authorization Act (employee who has 6 years in H-1B status where the employer started their sponsorship for a green card by the end of the 5th year in H-1B status).

USCIS will begin receiving employment authorization requests on behalf of eligible H-4 spouses on 26 May 2015.