If your spouse has an L-1 visa, you probably entered the U.S. in L-2 status. Now that you have acclimated to living in the U.S. you may be thinking about applying for a job. Fortunately, by virtue of having L-2 status, you likely have employment authorization.
Unlike in the past, you do not need to apply for a separate employment authorization document. Indeed, your L-2 status gives you employment authorization. Still, you may wonder how you can properly complete Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification.
The I-9 form
Most employers in the U.S. have a legal duty to verify the identity and work authorization of everyone they hire. To do so, employees and employers must jointly complete I-9 forms. According to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, your employer should give you a list of acceptable documents you can use to prove your identity and work eligibility.
Your I-94 card
Whether you entered the U.S. with your L-2 visa or changed your status inside the country, you should have an I-94 arrival and departure record. This card either has an L-2S annotation or it does not.
If your I-94 card has an L-2S annotation, it is an acceptable List C document for I-9 purposes. Providing this card with an acceptable identification document from List A is sufficient.
If your I-94 does not have an L-2 annotation, you may need to present your I-94 card plus the spousal designation notice you received in the mail from the USCIS. Together, these items should be sufficient to prove your work eligibility. Again, though, you also must present an identification document.
Ultimately, as long as you offer acceptable documentation for I-9 purposes, your employer must accept the documents you choose to provide.