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Can I Work While My Work Permit Application is Pending?

Foreign nationals in the United States need government authorization to work, making the work permit a crucial document. Employers are required to verify your work authorization before you can start working.

At Vanderwall Immigration, we receive many questions about work permits. For example, some people are very eager to begin working and wonder how long they’ll need to wait. Work permits also expire, usually after one year. Contact our firm if you have some questions or need help applying for or renewing a work permit.

Obtaining an Initial Work Permit

To work legally in the U.S., most individuals must submit Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization, to USCIS. If approved, you will receive an Employment Authorization Document (EAD), commonly known as a work permit. Processing can take up to a year, so patience is necessary. However, certain categories, such as principal U nonimmigrant petitioners, do not need to file Form I-765. Additionally, Green Card holders do not require an EAD as their Green Card serves as proof of work authorization.

Renewing Your Work Permit

Work permits typically expire after one year, necessitating renewal to continue working legally. Many wonder if they can work while their renewal application is pending, especially given the lengthy processing times. Fortunately, USCIS has implemented a Temporary Final Rule that grants an automatic 540-day extension for many EAD holders. This automatic extension applies after your current EAD expires, ensuring no employment gaps during the renewal process.

Only specific immigrant categories qualify for this 540-day extension. For more information, check the USCIS website or consult with our law firm.

Speak with an Immigration Lawyer Today

If you are applying for a work permit or need assistance with renewing yours, contact Vanderwall Immigration today. Our experienced team has helped countless foreign nationals achieve their dream of working in the U.S. Schedule a private consultation to discuss the steps and evidence required to obtain your EAD. Si hablamos Español.