U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that certain renewal applicants who have filed Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization, qualify for an automatic extension of their expiring work authorization and/or employment authorization documents (EADs) while their renewal applications are pending. As of October 27, 2023, those who are eligible “will receive 180-day extensions in accordance with existing regulations, including those who have applied for or have received Temporary Protected Status or asylum,” USCIS said.
The agency noted that in May 2022, it announced a temporary final rule (TFR) that increased the automatic extension period for EADs available to certain EAD renewal applicants from up to 180 days to up to 540 days. This new change is not retroactive, USCIS said; “all previous up to 540-day automatic extensions will remain in place.”
USCIS said it is determining whether there is a need for a new regulatory action similar to the May 2022 TFR.
As announced in the 2022 TFR, automatic extensions of employment authorization and EAD validity will be the original up to 180-day period for eligible applicants who timely file a Form I-765 renewal application on or after October 27, 2023. For those who received an increased automatic extension period under the TFR, the increased automatic extension will end when they receive a final decision on their renewal application or when the up to 540-day period expires (counted from the expiration date of the employment authorization and/or their EAD), whichever comes earlier.
USCIS also recently published a Policy Manual update increasing the maximum EAD validity period to five years for initial and renewal applications approved on or after September 27, 2023, for the following categories:
- Certain noncitizens who are employment-authorized incident to status or circumstance, including those admitted as refugees, paroled as refugees, or granted asylum, and recipients of withholding of removal; and
- Certain noncitizens who must apply for employment authorization, including applicants for asylum and withholding of removal, adjustment of status, and suspension of deportation or cancellation of removal.