US extends employment authorisation for green card applicants, good news for Indian nationalstext_fields
The United States has announced a significant policy change that will extend employment authorisation to non-immigrant categories, including individuals awaiting green cards, for a duration of five years.
This decision is expected to benefit tens of thousands of Indians residing in the United States.
The US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) revealed that it is increasing the maximum validity period of Employment Authorization Documents (EAD) to five years for both initial and renewal EADs for specific non-citizens who are required to apply for employment authorisation.
This extension applies to applicants for asylum or withholding of removal, those in the process of adjusting their status under INA 245, and individuals with pending suspension of deportation or cancellation of removal, as stated by the federal agency.
The primary objective of extending the maximum EAD validity period to five years is to significantly reduce the influx of new Forms I-765, Application for Employment Authorization, submitted for EAD renewals over the next several years. This initiative aims to contribute to the reduction of processing times and backlogs associated with EAD applications.
Nevertheless, the continuation of employment authorisation for non-citizens is contingent on their underlying status, individual circumstances, and the category under which they filed for EAD.
For instance, if an individual received an EAD based on a pending adjustment of status application with a maximum validity period of five years and their adjustment application is subsequently denied, their associated employment authorisation may be terminated before the expiration date listed on their EAD.
A recent study has revealed that over 1.05 million Indians are in the queue for employment-based Green Cards, with an alarming projection that 400,000 of them may pass away before they obtain the coveted legal document granting permanent residency in the United States.
The Green Card, officially known as a Permanent Resident Card, serves as evidence that the holder has been granted the privilege of permanent residence in the United States. The per-country caps refer to numerical limitations on the issuance of green cards to individuals from specific countries.
This year, the backlog for employment-based Green Cards has reached an all-time high of 1.8 million cases, according to a study conducted by David J Bier of the Cato Institute, an American libertarian think tank. A substantial portion of the backlog, approximately 1.1 million cases (63%), comprises Indian nationals, with an additional 250,000 cases (14%) originating from China.