Court ruling affirms work rights of some visa holders’ spouses

On Behalf of | Apr 11, 2023 | Employment Immigration

Employment-based immigration often leads to massive changes not just for a worker who is accepting a new position but also their entire immediate family. With rare exceptions, many professionals granted work visas apply for visas that will grant their spouse and unmarried minor children visas related to their own.

An entire family can travel to and live in the United States together as a result of this opportunity. However, the person with the employment visa may have slightly more opportunities than the rest of the family. Frequently, spouses and children of those in the country for employment purposes cannot seek jobs of their own. However, a recent court decision might actually help tens of thousands of immigrants get jobs here in the United States, benefiting immigrant families and the domestic economy.

What did the courts decide?

Recently, a major ruling on a prior policy that has faced challenges came down in favor of immigrants and their families. Essentially, the courts will allow the continued use of a rule implemented during the Obama Administration. Spouses of workers who hold H-1B visas can continue to use H-4 visas that allow them to seek jobs. The ruling will have an impact on roughly 90,000 existing visa holders and countless others considering employment opportunities in the United States.

Changing immigration laws matter to those with visas

Those who don’t know their rights as an immigrant or the family member of someone who has a work visa will have a harder time making use of beneficial court precedents and federal immigration rules. Families that have two parents earning income often enjoy a higher overall standard of living. Additionally, the spouses of those who have the education and career success necessary to qualify for an H-1B visa often also have the potential to contribute substantially to the domestic economy if they seek an H-4 visa to obtain a job.

As the law changes in the United States because of legislation and court rulings, the obligations and rights of immigrants also change. Remaining up-to-date on important work-based immigration policies and working with a legal professional can help immigrants stay compliant and protect their right to remain in the United States.



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