H1B to H4 EAD

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Hi.. Am on H1B starting 3/1/2017 and my spouse has an approved I140. My employer(consultant) is stating that I don't have enough time to initiate the PERM process before getting max out on H1B. I don't understand how and why. 

My questions - 

1. Am I eligible to initiate the PERM process and still get I140 approved before max out period (~2/2023 as per my calculation)

2. If not, can I switch to H4 EAD and still continue my employment. If so, what is the process and how does it work with H1B change of status?

3. What are my other options to continue employment? 

Appreciate any help. 



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Ans. 1 - Good idea to get PERM started immediately.  If approved PERM is filed prior to 365 days before H1b max out (2/2023 in your case), you get an additional one year, bringing it to 7th year in H1b extension (max out on 02/2024).  Best option.

Ans. 2  - To be on safe side, you can decide to start H4 EAD process somewhere around  Jan. of 2022, as there is no premium processing currently in H4 and let it run its own due process simultaneously (and once approved, decide which status you would like to be in).  In case your PERM / I-140 is still under process,  you should have a valid EAD on hand to continue your employment without a break in your work, so plan accordingly.

Lets see what other experts advise

Edited by Zodiac System
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1. You have enough time....seems that your consultant is stalling/making excuses.

2. If your spouse is on H1B, then you can apply for change of status to H4 and then apply for H4 EAD....but there will be a big gap while you wait for your H4 EAD (Processing times for H4 + EAD are running at a ridiculous 9-12month time frame)

3. Continue on your H1B and find another employer who will file your PERM

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