Extended Employment Authorization Document

Posted in Policy at 8:32 pm by Lalita Haran

On June 12, 2008 the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) issued a communication in the form of Questions and Answers which included among other information that it would soon start issuing the work authorization documents with a 2 yr. validity period to a specific group of adjustment of status applicants and that within two weeks from now the applicants would even start receiving their extended EADs. The authority to do so is claimed under its interim rule, “Employment Authorization Documents” at 69 Federal Regulation 45555, issued July 30, 2004, which gives it the discretion to issue EADs with a validity period different from one year, based upon certain specific criteria the agency chooses to apply.

According to the USCIS Communication, the extended work authorization would be provided only to those who are seeking the Lawful Permanent Resident Status by filing the I-485 adjusment of status application but are unable to adjust their status because of the unavailability of the immigrant visa numbers. The present effort comes as an ameliorative remedy to cure the situation caused by the huge backlog after August ’07 when the immigrant visa numbers retrogressed as a result of the July ’07 Visa Bulletin fiasco and the consequential rush in filing the AOS applications in July – August 2007.

The standard for grantng the two year work authorization is set by the most recent Visa Bulletin issued by the Department of State.

The Communication also clarifies that the I-765 filed along with the I-485 application would not qualify for the favored treatment because such an application would have been filed when the Immigrant Visa numbers were available. The adjustment applicant in this case scenario would receive a one year work authorization. If the visa numbers remain unavailable at the expiration of the first EAd period he could then apply for the two year employment authorization document.

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