Foreign nationals living in the United States are not authorized to work unless they have received permission under the terms of their visa or other status, or have applied for and received a work permit.
Below we will explain the categories of foreign nationals who are eligible to apply for a work permit. If after reading the following information you have further questions or require further assistance, contact us.
Am I Eligible to Apply for a Work Permit?
Foreign nationals who are eligible for a work permit and should apply for one should they wish to work in the United States include but are not limited to the following:
· Asylees/Refugees (and their Spouse and Children);
· Deferred Enforced Departure(DED)/Extended Voluntary Departure;
· Those granted Temporary Protected Status;
· F-1 Students Seeking Optional Practical Training;
· J-2 Spouse or Minor Child of an Exchange Visitor;
· M-1 Student Seeking Practical Training After Completing Studies;
· Spouse of an H-1B Nonimmigrant;
· K-1 Nonimmigrant Fiance(e) of U.S. Citizen or K-2 Dependent;
· Applicants who have filed for adjustment of status;
· VAWA Self-Petitioners;
· Consideration of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).
Each of the categories listed above along with many more that can be found on the USCIS websiteare eligible to apply for work authorization.
How to Apply for a Work Permit
In order to apply for an EAD, you’ll need to fill out USCIS form I-765, attach supporting documentation to show that you are among the category of people eligible to apply for a work permit, and attach photos and the appropriate fee. The current fee is $380.00, however certain categories are exempt from paying the fee. One such category are those who have applied for asylum and are awaiting a response on their application.
How Long Is My Work Permit Valid and How Long Will it Take?
Generally work permits are valid for one year and you would need to renew your work permit 120 days prior to its expiration. The time frame in which USCIS processes work permits depends on the category that you are applying for and the process center that will be processing your work permit. You can find current processing times here.