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Key Points

  • US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has completed an update of certain I-94s for eligible L-2 spouses in its electronic Form I-94 system
  • CBP has added an “S” to the status of eligible L-2 individuals who entered the US before January 31, 2022 – allowing for employment under the L-2 status without the need for a separate EAD (Employment Authorization Document)
  • L-2 individuals entering the US on or after January 31, 2022, will receive “S” status upon entry
  • Eligible L-2 spouses must present proof of spousal relationship upon US entry or wait until their subsequent status adjustment to receive an “S”
  • E-2 spouses must follow the same protocols as L-2 spouses to receive an “S” annotation allowing for employment


US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has announced that it automatically updated certain I-94s for L-2 spouses aged 22 and older in its electronic Form I-94 system.

What are the Changes?

Individuals in L-2 status who entered the US before January 31, 2022, have had an “S” added to their status in the electronic system, which allows for employment incidental to L-2 status. Individuals who entered the US in this status on January 31, 2022, or later have had, or will have, an “S” added to their status upon entering the country.

Eligible spouses will receive an “S” by presenting evidence upon entry of their spousal relationship, such as a marriage certificate, or through the subsequent filing with USCIS when they wish to change or extend their status.

CBP has not made the automatic adjustment for E-2 spouses, as the agency has indicated it cannot distinguish between E-2 principal and dependent spouses in the electronic system. E-2 spouses seeking an “S” notation on their I-94 must follow the exact instructions as L-2 spouses, as noted above.

Looking Ahead

USCIS is issuing I-797 approval notices for L-2 and E-2 spouses that may be used to document work authorization and complete Form I-9.

Written by: Lucy Halse, Content Marketing Associate, Envoy Global
Edited by: Dmitri Pikman, Supervising Attorney, Corporate Immigration Partners
Source: American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA)

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