Group of Indians file suit against US immigration for L2 visa work permit


A group of L-2 visa holders in the US who currently do not have the permit to work in the country have come together and filed a class-action suit challenging the US immigration policy that the rules prevent from working till they don’t have a work permit.

An L-2 visa is a visa document used to enter the United States by the dependent spouse and unmarried children under 21 years of age of qualified L-1 visa holders.

The suit was filed last week in the US District Court for the Western District of Washington by a group of 15 plaintiffs, of which 13 are Indian nationals.

By statute, L-2 visa holders, or spouses of L-1 visa holders, are authorized employment incident to status.

“This means they should be able to work without a separate work permit application,” said Jonathan Wasden, attorney at Wasden Banias, an immigration law firm.

As a result, the applicants have to go without a job for 10-15 months while they wait for the immigration agency to adjudicate on their petition.

The lawsuit also calls for enabling automatic extension of employment authorization documents or EADs for H4 visa holders, or spouses of H-1B visa holders, if they meet certain criteria set down in the policy handbook, a practice, Wasden said, that isn’t followed by the agency.