Visas for H-1B Dependents

Dependents (husband/wife, and/or unmarried children under the age of 21) of H-1B beneficiaries fall into the H-4 visa category.

Visa requirements

  • Study: H-4 dependents are eligible for full-time and part-time study.
  • Employment: H-4 dependents are not eligible for employment.

Required documentation

  • Applying for an Overseas H-1B: Dependents do not need to file additional documentation. Dependents use H-1B supporting documentation to apply for the H-4 visa and do not receive their own Approval Notices).
  • Extending or changing status: It is the responsibility of the H-1B beneficiary and the H-4 dependent to maintain the H-4 status. The dependent must file Form I-539 to change his/her status in any way, including changing to a different visa category, extending the H-4 end-date, or documenting the beneficiary's change of employer.
  • Travel: When traveling, H-4 dependents should carry with him/her a copy of the H-1B Approval Notice, copy of the H-1B petition most recently submitted to USCIS, as well as any other relevant documents related to H-4 status (Approval Notice, H-4 visa stamp) and a valid passport.

Please review the our guidelines and tips for filing the I-539. You may submit this form to the IO for review or you may choose to file it yourself.