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L-2 Spouses No Longer Need a Separate Employment Authorization Document For U.S. Work

The US Department of Homeland Security settled a lawsuit regarding employment authorization for spouses of L-1 intracompany transferees ("L-2 Spouses"). As a result, L-2 spouses will no longer need a separate employment authorization document (EAD) to work in the US. Click here for article.

  • Regulatory Background: While certain foreign nationals, like Lawful Permanent Residents, are automatically employment authorized, others, including L-2 spouses, were required to obtain a separate EAD before working in the US. However, the Immigration and Nationality Act mandates employment authorization for L-2 spouses.

  • Settlement Impact: L-2 spouses can now commence employment with any employer upon arrival in the US without needing an EAD. They will not face inadmissibility for engaging in unauthorized employment without an EAD.

  • Benefits for Employers:

  • Streamlined Process: USCIS's slow processing of EAD applications often led to termination or unpaid leaves of absence for L-2 spouse employees. With this change, employers won't need to terminate employees due to delayed EAD processing.

  • Reduced Disruption: The settlement makes using an L visa less disruptive for families, as spouses no longer need to wait months for an EAD. They can search for employment in the US and accept a job upon arrival.

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