Expediting H4 EAD via Expedite request or get new I-94 with my latest H1B I-797

Partly, my case is similar to this thread. Please advise me on the the best option possible. Background - my H1B visa is renewed till 2025, but my spouses’ H4 and H4 EAD renewal is pending since October. Her H4 visa and H4 EAD is valid till February 14, 2022, but due to the current processing times it seems unlikely that both will be renewed in the normal time frame before expiry. As a result, we filed an H4 EAD expedite request in November 2021 with USCIS which was denied (since H4 renewal was still pending). Our attorney suggested we reach our local Congressman to expedite directly with USCIS which I did in mid-November 2021 but USCIS turned down the request suggesting its too early to expedite and hence it does not meet any of their criteria.

What do you suggest -

  1. File H4 expedite request with USCIS? If yes, how many weeks prior to expiry of H4 visa should we file?
  2. File an H4 EAD expedite request again with USCIS 4 weeks prior to H4 EAD expiry for financial loss and medical reasons (I have all documentation) and if denied by USCIS, attempt via local Congressman again?
  3. If both options don’t work then attempt to get new I-94 for my spouse via CBP office in Laredo, TX (I’m based in central Texas) using my new H1B I-797. The new I-94 would allow her to qualify for H4 EAD grace period for 6 months. Is my assumption correct? If yes, can a CBP office in Austin, TX help or it has to be at the US-Mexico border (assuming via road)?

My spouses’ H4 and H4 EAD expires in 7 weeks with her H4 renewal and H4 EAD renewal application under processing. After reviewing the link you shared, there’s literally no concrete solution which could help her get a new I-94 with validity up to my new H1B i.e. 2025. The second option in the blog, “Expired H4 i94, Extension Pending” is what will apply to her after 7 weeks, but it has only 50% success rate. I called up the CBP office in Laredo, TX and they told me that if your spouse does not have the new visa on per passport, they will offer only a temporary 10-day I-94. Now that will not help my spouses’ employment or work authorization.

Having said this, can you confirm my above understanding? Please check the 3 ideas suggested in my original post and if any of them has a better feasibility.

CC: @Kalpesh_Dalwadi, @Anil_Gupta

Expidite request will only have little chance of approval. You can wait for premium processing to be available for H4/EAD in near future and upgrade.

I called the cbp office today on the same issue and unless you have a valid visa stamped on the passport, they wint extend the I 94

Hi Silpa,

My husband did not have a valid stamping on his passport but we crossed the border in san diego went to mexico and came back through pedestrain crossing and got his i94 updated to 2025, used automatic revalidation to enter you need to have a valid visa to come back

I crossed into Mexico via Texas-Mexico border i.e. Laredo, TX on the last day before my spouse’s H4 visa and H4 EAD expires (February 13, 2022) and when asked for a I-94 stamp the CBP officer did oblige. This qualifies her for the H4 EAD automatic extension of the H4 EAD grace rule, and she can continue employment. Thank you Truvisa and all coaches for the assistance.

For others, please remember to visit Mexico or Canadian border just before your H4 visa expires and make a good reasoning in why your spouse needs the I-94 stamp.

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