This month, Joseph & Hall, in collaboration with the Immpact Litigation collaboration and the American Immigration Lawyers Association, filed a class action lawsuit challenging United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) delays in processing Employment Authorization Documents (EADs).
Plaintiffs in the case, titled Kang v. DHS, are individuals in E-2 nonimmigrant status and individuals seeking adjustment of status who are suffering from agency delays in processing EAD applications. The agency, previously required to adjudicate EAD applications within 90 days, now says that processing times of 21.5 months are “normal” for some applicants. As long as an application has not gone outside of the “normal” processing times, applicants are told they cannot even contact the agency to inquire about the status of their case.
In the meantime, applicants who are otherwise eligible for EADs are missing out on job opportunities, being terminated due to lack of work authorization, and losing the ability to provide for themselves and their families—solely due to systemic bureaucratic delays.
Kang v. DHS seeks class certification and an order finding that the government has acted arbitrarily and capriciously in allowing processing times to balloon to unprecedented levels, finding the delays unreasonable, and ordering the government to return to a 90-day processing timeframe for EADs while establishing safeguards against gaps in employment authorization including through automatic extensions and interim EAD documents.
The Kang case has been filed in U.S. District Court for the District of Colombia and we will provide further updates as the case progresses.
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