H4 study in USA


I have valid H1b VISA till August 2016 and my wife HAS h4 dependent VISA for the same time. I am currently in India. I might get chance to travel by End of Jan or Feb 2016. My wife applied to certain colleges in USA for MS in Computer Engineering for Winter 2016 semester. My question is can she travel before me with H4 VISA. We have not applied F1 VISA for her. We thought once we both are in USA we will apply for change of status in USA.

  1. Is it ok if my wife travels before me on H4 VISA?

  2. Also, If she does not join Winter semester and decides to join in Fall, can she join if her H4 VISA extension is applied and pending.

  1. Well, technically having a visa means nothing until you enter US. What matters is your status. What is Visa Vs Status in US . Without you having valid H1B status, your dependent status is not identified. I am afraid, you may not have your wife travel before you establish your status of H1B in US.

  2. She needs a valid visa to enter US. After she enters, then she needs to maintain status. if extension is applied as part of maintaining her status after entering US, she can.

If you are in doubt, you can always speak to your attorney who applied H1B visa, they should be able to guide you.