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USCIS Temporarily Increases Automatic Extension Period for Certain EAD Applicants

The recent Temporary Final Rule (TFR) announced by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has stated the increase in the automatic extension period for employment authorization and Employment Authorization Documents (EADs).

These automatic extensions are only available to specific Employment Authorization Documents (EADs), whereas its maximum duration will last up to 540 days.

  • Why have EAD extensions been implemented?

The primary purpose of the above implementation is to fill the void left in the employment domain. Another reason is to stabilize the job market for the noncitizens who have their EADs currently in pending state for application renewals.

This ruling will support U.S. employers and the job market primarily. In previous years, the USCIS has faced challenges in completing the caseloads. On the other hand, the Covid-19 has also caused further disruptions in the procedures that have enhanced those challenges further, which also had repercussions on the workforce.

Therefore, on May 3, 2022, the ruling was rolled out throughout the U.S. to provide the necessary support to the employers and the economy.

  • What is EAD?

To understand this TFR thoroughly, it is also necessary to know about the EAD. The Employment Authorization Document (EAD) serves the purpose of a general work permit that ensures a foreign employee’s legitimacy to work in the U.S. legally

  • EAD Automatic Extension

The key points to note while considering the automatic extensions are the following:

  • The TFR is only applied to the eligible EAD categories.
  • This is an automatic extension that will be up to 180 days.
  • Further, this will also provide up to 360 days of additional automatic extension time for 540 days.
  • These automatic extensions will only apply to applicants who have filled the Form I-765 renewal applications within the required time frame pending for the 18 months following the TFR’s publication.
  • EAD Eligible Categories

The categories include the following whose applications are pending or are pending applications for adjustment of status. An automatic extension is available to the following employment categories:

Eligible Category listed on Form 1-765 renewal ApplicationDescription
(c)(31)VAWA Self-Petitioners
(c)(26)Spouses of certain H-1B principal nonimmigrants with an unexpired I-94 showing H-4 nonimmigrant status
(c)(24)LIFE Legalization
(c)(22)Section 245A Legalization (pending I-687)
(c)(20)Section 210 Legalization (pending I-700)
(c)(19)Pending initial application for TPS where USCIS determines the applicant is prima facie eligible for TPS and can receive an EAD as a “temporary treatment benefit”.
(c)(16)Creation of Record (Adjustment Based on Continuous Residence Since January 1, 1972)
(c)(10)Suspension of Deportation Applicants (filed before April 1, 1997)
Cancellation of Removal Applicants
Special Rule Cancellation of Removal Applicants Under NACARA
(c)(9)Pending Adjustment of Status under Section 245 of the Act
(c)(8)Asylum Application Pending
(a)(18)Spouse of principal L-1 Nonimmigrant with an unexpired I-94 showing L-2 (including L-2S) nonimmigrant status*
(a)(17)Spouse of principal E nonimmigrant with an unexpired I-94 showing E (including E-1S, E-2S and E-3S) nonimmigrant status*
(a)(12)Temporary Protected Status (TPS) Granted
(a)(10)Withholding of Deportation or Removal Granted
(a)(8)Citizen of Micronesia, Marshall Islands, or Palau
(a)(7)N-8 or N-9
  • Eligibility

The eligible ones will be considered to have:

  • Properly filed Form I-765 for a renewal of their employment authorization and EAD before the expiration of their present EAD and Are otherwise qualified for renewal.
  • Their renewal application was filed under a category that is eligible for an automatic 180-day extension,
  • The category on the current EAD matches the “Class Requested” listed on the Form I-797C Notice of Action.
  • EAD Extension Rules

The EAD extension rules are dependent on the following factors:

  • The eligibility category on the EAD must match the employee’s Form I-797 Receipt Notice for the application for an extension of their EAD (except for TPS employees, who may have a C19/A12 combination).
  • The individual must be applying for an extension in a category listed on the USCIS Automatic Employment Authorization Document (EAD).
  • If the applicant is an H-4, E, or L-2 dependent spouse, they must have a valid Form I-94 establishing their nonimmigrant status.
  • Our Services:

Amid the recent TFR announced by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), you are welcome to get our legal assistance and guidance if you find yourself perplexed in legal matters. With our expert supervision and legal counselling, a legal pathway to deal with complexities always exists.  Offering ease and accessibility, we offer assessments remotely.