Employment Authorization Attorney in Greenbelt, Maryland
For generations, people from all over the world have been coming to the U.S. in the hopes of building a better life for themselves and their families. You may wish to permanently immigrate here and become a naturalized citizen, or you may hope to take advantage of the job market while keeping citizenship in your home country. Whether you’re in the U.S. already or making plans to come here to work, you’ll need to have the proper documentation that allows you to legally get a job. We know how complicated it can be to begin working in the United States and at the Anyere Law Firm, LLC, we can help you with all your immigration employment needs. If you’re in the Greenbelt, Maryland area or anywhere throughout Prince George's County, give us a call today to talk about your options.
Every employee working in the U.S. must be authorized to work, regardless of their citizenship status. Employers are required by law to verify the identity and work authorization of each employee and have the employee complete an I-9 form. There are a few different documents you can provide to prove you’re able to work legally, and by law, you are allowed to choose which of these documents you show to your employer—they cannot force you to use one document over another.
If you’re a permanent resident, your green card (also called a permanent resident card) will serve as your employment authorization, and you won’t need to apply for a separate document. You can also use a foreign passport if it has a temporary I-551 stamp or a Form I-94. Lastly, many non-U.S. citizens will need to get an Employment Authorization Document (EAD). You will also hear an EAD referred to simply as a “work permit.”
You may need to apply for an EAD if your legal status is that of an asylee, refugee, U nonimmigrant, or your immigration status allows you to work and you need evidence of this, such as a student studying abroad. You will also need an EAD if you need permission to work, such as having a pending permanent residence or asylum application. It’s very important that you obtain an EAD if you only have a nonimmigrant visa and wish to work. If your employer requests documentation and you aren’t able to provide it, you could risk having your visa revoked and being deported.
How to Apply
If you’re applying for an EAD for the first time, you’ll need to file Form I-765, and you can get this off the USCIS website. You’ll also need to provide initial evidence with your application, which could include a copy of your Form I-94 (Nonimmigrant Arrival-Departure Record), your passport, two passport photos, a government-issued ID, and Form G-28 if you’re using an attorney to help you apply.
You can submit your application either online or through the mail, though if you do send it by mail double-check the address because USCIS has several different locations. Your state and your immigration status will determine what address you send it to. The processing time for EAD varies depending on your eligibility category, and they are usually valid for 1 to 2 years. If your application is denied, you should speak with an immigration attorney to determine your next steps.
Renewal of Employment
If you need to renew your EAD, you should start the process between 90 and 180 days before your current card expires. This process can take three or more months to complete, and the earlier you start, the less chance there is of a gap in your employment authorization. You will have to fill out a new Form I-765, submit new renewal evidence, and you may have to pay the filing fee again if you haven’t received a waiver.
You can also use this same process to replace your card if it was lost, stolen, or damaged. If there is incorrect information on your card, you can also request a new one. If a mistake was made by USCIS, then they will replace the card for free. However, you will more than likely have to pay the filing fee again if the mistake wasn’t their fault. If you send in your card and application for replacement and the USCIS determines you are no longer eligible for an EAD, then they will keep your card and issue you a response explaining why.
Employment Authorization Attorney Serving Greenbelt, MD
At the Anyere Law Firm, LLC in Greenbelt, Maryland, we’re committed to helping people from all over the world with their immigration concerns when coming to the U.S. If you need to obtain employment authorization documents to legally work in the country, call us today to set up an appointment to get started.