USCIS Announces Temporary Return of 540-day EAD Auto-Extensions

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USCIS Announces Temporary Return of 540-day EAD Auto-Extensions

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On April 4, 2024, USCIS announced a temporary rule that will give 540-day auto-extensions of work authorization to certain Employment Authorization Document (EAD) renewal applicants. Prior to the announcement of this rule, automatic extensions were for just 180 days—often not long enough to make sure that the renewal EAD card arrived before the auto-extension expired. The increased period of auto extension is another acknowledgment of the systemic delays in the adjudication of EAD applications and the hardship such delays are inflicting on applicants and their employers.

The new rule only applies to categories that could already benefit from the previously existing 180-day extension provisions, including adjustment of status applicants, cancellation of removal applicants, and asylum applicants (see table below for full list of eligible categories).

To qualify, applicants must be renewing in a qualifying EAD category and must have applied for renewal prior to the expiration of their last EAD.

The 540-day extensions will be applicable to those in qualifying categories (1) whose I-765 renewal applications were filed on or after October 27, 2023, and remain pending as of April 8, 2024; and (2) who timely file their I-765 renewal application from April 8, 2024, through September 30, 2025.

For those who filed a renewal application between October 27, 2023, and April 8, 2024, this rule applies even if the receipt notice indicates that the auto-extension would only be for 180 days. Individuals in this situation can show their I-765 receipt notice along with the facially expired EAD to an employer to demonstrate that they are benefiting from the 540-day auto-extension.

USCIS will not be issuing updated receipt notices explaining the 540-day auto-extension. Instead, it will update its website and instruct employers to refer to the website when determining whether a receipt notice presented with the facially expired EAD is acceptable for Form I-9.

Current clients are welcome to contact us with questions. If you are not a current client and wish to discuss how this new rule might affect your case, please contact our office to schedule a consultation.

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