H4 Visa: Can h4 visa holder study in usa?

The H4 visa is a dependent visa for spouses and unmarried children under 21 years old of H1B, H2, and H3 visa holders. It allows them to live and study in the United States with their primary visa holder.

Who is eligible for an H4 visa?

To be eligible for an H4 visa, you must be the spouse or unmarried child under 21 years old of an H1B, H2, or H3 visa holder. The primary visa holder must also be able to financially support you during your stay.

What are the advantages of an H4 visa?

  • Lower tuition fees for public school education
  • Ability to attend school or college
  • Ability to get a driver’s license and open a bank account
  • Ability to be self-employed or partner in a business (with an H4 EAD)

What are the disadvantages of an H4 visa?

  • Cannot work for an employer without an H4 EAD
  • Status is dependent on the primary visa holder’s status
  • Education opportunities are limited without an F1 visa

How does the H4 visa impact your plans to study or work in the United States?

If you are interested in working in the United States, you will need to obtain an H4 EAD. This is only available to H4 visa holders whose spouse has started the green card process and obtained an approved I-140.

If you are interested in studying in the United States, you may be eligible for in-state tuition fees if you are enrolled in an undergraduate or master’s degree program. However, you will not be eligible for on-campus jobs, assistantships, CPT, OPT, or STEM OPT.

Choosing between an H4 and F1 visa for studies

The decision of whether to study on an H4 visa or convert to an F1 visa depends on your goals. H4 offers lower tuition fees, but F1 provides more opportunities for on-campus work, assistantships, CPT, OPT, and STEM extensions. On an F1 visa, your status remains independent of your spouse’s H1B status, allowing you to continue your studies even if their status expires.


The H4 visa is a valuable option for spouses and children of H1B visa holders who want to live and study in the United States. However, it is important to be aware of the limitations of the visa, such as the inability to work without an H4 EAD and the dependent status on the primary visa holder.

If you have specific questions or topics you’d like to delve into in more detail, please let us know in the comments.

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