Can H4-EAD spouse continue working while renewal pending with USCIS?

Quick Question - Can my spouse still continue working on H4-EAD while her H4-EAD renewal application is still pending with USCIS ?

H4 EAD cannot work after EAD expiry and Renewal Pending

H4 EAD cannot work if the current EAD card validity has expired and renewal is pending with USCIS.

The work can be re-started only after she has received the physical H4 EAD card after renewal.

The automatic 180 day EAD Extension

Automatic EAD 180 extension is NOT allowed for H4 EADs by USCIS.
More info on H4 EAD 180 day extension:

Thanks Anil for your reply.

Its funny, when I called USCIS they said, my spouse can work while application is pending, as long as application is filed before EAD expiration date.

USCIS does have an EAD rule which provides automatic interim work permit for upto 180 days (to give continuation of job) if filed before its expiry.

BUT, it is NOT applicable for H4-EAD specifically. So, be careful.

Thanks Anil, you have stated correctly.

I have checked it further on USCIS website and Automatic renewal is not applicable specifically to H4-EAD and that would mean, its better for me to get my H1 extension as early as possible to get enough time to file my spouse H4-EAD. Thanks again !

I would strongly recommend to file all applications i.e. H1B extension, H4 extension and H4-EAD renewal together (in same package) in premium.

This way, in most cases, H4 extension and H4-EAD is also processed within 15 days along with H1B extension. You do not have to wait.

These days, H4-EAD is taking somewhere between 5.5 to 7.5 months to get a result.

I am sure this will give you a bigger hit if your spouse loses work authorization for even a month than paying for premium processing.