Houston - Work permit
For an in-depth understanding of job opportunities in Houston, you have to understand the visa regulations detailed under the immigration section of Paguro or refer to Uscis website
In short, should you be joining your spouse in the US, it is likely that you are on an H2 or L2 visa in the former case you are not permitted to work in the US. You can, however, search for a job once in the country. If the employer is willing, he is then required to file a labor condition application with the Department of Labor - outlying the terms and conditions detailed in the employment contract. The American Immigration Center has a section on work visas and an on-line employment related service.
For L2 and E2 visa holder a major breakthrough had modified for the better the situation, the recent law change in Jan 2002, this types of visa allow spouses to obtain work authorization. A person in L-2 or E-2 status may apply for the Employment Authorization Card (EAD) from INS.
Below you can find an excerpt from the US government official INS site
What is an Employment Authorization Document' U.S. employers must check to make sure all employees, regardless of citizenship or national origin, are allowed to work in the United States. If you are not a citizen or a lawful permanent resident, you may need to apply for an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) to prove you may work in the United States. INS issues Employment Authorization Documents (EAD) in the following categories:
EAD - This document proves you are allowed to work in the United States.
- Renewal EAD: You should apply for a renewal EAD six months before your original EAD expires.
- Replacement EAD: This document replaces a lost, stolen, or mutilated EAD. A replacement EAD also
replaces an EAD that was issued with incorrect information, such as a misspelled name.
- Interim EAD: If INS does not approve or deny your EAD application within 90 days (within 30 days for
an asylum applicant), you may request an interim EAD document.
Who is eligible
The specific categories that require an Employment Authorization Document include (but are not limited to) asylees and asylum seekers; refugees; students seeking particular types of employment; applicants to adjust to permanent residence status; people in or applying for temporary protected status; fiancés of American citizens; and dependents of foreign government officials. Please see INS Form I-765 (Application for Employment Authorization) for a complete list of the categories of people who must apply for an Employment Authorization Document to be able to work in the United States. Purpose of Form I-765: Certain aliens who are temporarily in the United States may file a Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization, to request an ' Employment Authorization Document' (EAD). Other aliens who are authorized to work in the United States without restrictions should also use this form to apply to the INS for a document evidencing such authorization.
How to apply
You must file an INS Form I-765 (Application for Employment Authorization) by mail with the INS Regional Service Center that serves the area where you live. You can start your application on line at the url mentioned above.
- Houston District Office of the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS)
The office hours are Monday-Thursday 7:00 AM - 3:30 PM, and Friday 7:00 AM - 11:30 AM.
The Houston District services 30 counties in south-eastern Texas: Angelina, Austin, Brazoria, Chambers, Colorado, Fort Bend, Galveston, Grimes, Hardin, Harris, Jasper, Jefferson, Liberty, Madison, Matagorda, Montgomery, Nacogdoches, Newton, Orange, Polk, Sabine, San Augustine, San Jacinto, Shelby, Trinity, Tyler, Walker, Waller, Washington (for all services except Naturalization), and Wharton.
If INS does not approve or denies your Employment Authorization Document application within 90 days (within 30 days for an asylum applicant), you may request an interim Employment Authorization Document. You must go to your local INS district office and bring with you proof of your identity and any documents that INS has sent you about your employment authorization application.
How to find out the status of the application
To check the status of your application, you should be prepared to provide the specific information about your application, such as the ten-digit receipt number printed on your Form I-797 or your Alien Registration Number, name, and date of birth.
Who can help
As with any proceeding before the INS, you have a right to be represented by an attorney authorized to practice in the United States or by a non-profit organization authorized to represent individuals before the INS. If you need advice, please go to INS Legal Advice section to find a list of community-based, non-profit organizations that may be able to assist you.