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Trump admin's appeal against revoking H4 visas

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) argued that the American technology workers, who had challenged the 2015 ruling on giving work permits to H-4 visa-holders, have not been irreparably harmed by such work authorisation.

WASHINGTON: The US government has made a U-turn in its plan to review and possibly revoke what is known as the H-4 employment authorisation document (EAD), which allowed spouses of H-1B visa holders to legally work in the country. Indian nationals account for over two-thirds of H-1B visa holders in the United States.

The Department of Homeland Security has appealed to a US district court not to do away with an earlier Obama-era law that allowed spouses of H1-B visa holders to be employed locally. It argued that this did not take away jobs from American nationals.

The Department’s latest submission is in response to a 2015 lawsuit filed by Save Jobs USA, an advocacy group, which had argued that the H4 EAD harmed their members who are American technology workers. The DHS, however, countered saying that Save Jobs USA members had not been ‘irreparably harmed’ by giving work permits to H-4 visa holders.

“Save Jobs’s claim of irreparable harm relies on the H-4 Rule eliminating or significantly reducing employment opportunities, meaning that the number of available information-technology jobs would significantly decline due to the H-4 Rule. But, this relationship has not been shown to be “certain” and “actual,” rather than merely “theoretical”,” the Department said.

Save Jobs USA was set up by former employees of Southern California Edison, who claim that they lost their jobs to H-1B visa holders.

H-4 Visa, EAD, Spouse of H-1B Worker