A spouse or child of an employee holding H-1B status may obtain H-4 dependent status. Those holding H-4 status may not work, unless they have authorized work permission from USCIS in the form of an EAD card, but are permitted to attend school. Dependent children may hold H-4 status until age 21.
Family members accompanying the H-1B to the U.S. should apply for H-4 dependent visas. Only spouses and children under 21 years of age are eligible for H-4 visas. Proof of relationship to the H-1B (marriage and birth certificates) will be required as well as the original H-4 Approval Notice (I-797) if applicable in addition to all the items listed in the section on Getting a U.S. Visa Stamp. Dependents coming to the United States. for the first time will not have H-4 I-797 approval notices.
If an H-4 Dependent is entering the United States without the H-1B, make an H-1B Appointment with an OIA immigration specialist for specific instructions.