According to USCIS, non-citizens with a pending EAD renewal application whose 180-day automatic extension has lapsed and whose EAD has expired will be granted an additional period of employment authorisation and EAD validity beginning May 4, 2022, and lasting up to 540 days from the expiration date of their EAD.
They may resume employment if they are still within the up to 540-day automatic extension period and are otherwise eligible.
Non-citizens with a pending renewal application still covered under the 180-day automatic extension will be granted an additional extension of up to 360 days, for a total of up to 540 days past the expiration of the current EAD.
Non-citizens with a pending renewal application and a valid EAD on May 4, 2022, or who timely file an EAD renewal application before October 27, 2023, will be granted an automatic extension of up to 540 days if their EAD expires before the renewal application is processed.
“The change will immediately help about 87,000 immigrants whose work authorisation has lapsed or is set to in the next 30 days. Overall, the government estimates that as many as 4,20,000 immigrants renewing work permits will be protected from losing their ability to work for the duration of the policy,” Indian-American community leader Ajay Jain Bhutoria told PTI.
The policy is meant to address the unprecedented backlog of 1.5 million work permit applications at the nation’s legal immigration agency, leaving tens of thousands unable to work legally and exacerbating labour shortages.