Spouse and unmarried children under
age of 21 of an H1B visa holder are eligible for an H4 visa. A
person on an H4 status is not allowed to work unless and until the
person gets a Change of Status from the INS from H4 to H1B status.
Currently INS is not issuing Social Security Number (SSN) to H4 visa
H4 holders can get a Driver's license, open a Bank account, or even
go to college. Children on H4 visas do not need a separate visa to
It is possible to convert H4 to "F1" if one wishes to
attend full-time course work. This means, a minimum of twelve (12)
credits per semester in an educational institution recognized by the
Another option for those interested in continuing their education,
is to attend community colleges. This way, one does not have to
change visa status. These colleges only award the equivalent of a
Diploma, instead of a Degree, but they often the serve the purpose
at a lesser cost.
It is certainly possible to convert H4 to H1, if one can provide
proof, that he / he is qualified, has had prior experience in
his/her field of expertise, and have a job offer from a company in
the United States.