Effective immediately, the maximum validity period for initial and renewal EADs is extended to 5 years for specific noncitizens who are employment authorized incident to status or circumstance. This includes individuals admitted as refugees, paroled as refugees, granted asylum, and recipients of withholding of removal.
Furthermore, we are also increasing the maximum validity period to 5 years for initial and renewal EADs for specific noncitizens who are required to apply for employment authorization. This encompasses applicants for asylum or withholding of removal, adjustment of status under INA 245, and suspension of deportation or cancellation of removal.
The updated guidance outlines the categories of noncitizens automatically authorized to work and offers more details on presenting Form I-94, Arrival/Departure Record, as an acceptable document demonstrating employment authorization under List C of Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification. It is essential to note that the Form I-94 must be accompanied by identity documentation for employment authorization purposes. Additionally, the guidance specifies that certain Afghan and Ukrainian parolees are considered employment authorized incident to parole.
This extension of the maximum EAD validity period aims to significantly reduce the number of new Forms I-765, Application for Employment Authorization, received for EAD renewals in the coming years. This initiative supports our ongoing efforts to minimize processing times and address backlogs. However, it is crucial to emphasize that the maintenance of employment authorization for noncitizens remains contingent on their underlying status, circumstances, and the specific EAD filing category. For instance, if an individual obtains an EAD under the (c)(9) category based on a pending adjustment of status application for the maximum validity period of 5 years, and the adjustment application is subsequently denied, their ancillary employment authorization may be terminated before the expiration date listed on their EAD.