A work permit is an official document that allows you to work in the United States as a foreigner. Simply put, it is an Employment Authorization Document, or EAD, issued by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). It comes in the form of a wallet-sized card containing your basic personal details, including a full name, photo, date of expiration, alien registration number, and the terms and conditions to your permit.
A person who applied for asylum in the United States can apply for employment authorization in 150 days after the filing date of his application.
The Purpose of Form I-765
The work permit serves as evidence of employment authorization. It is meant to qualify immigrants for work in the United States. Once you file Form I-765 and get approved for employment, you will be qualified to apply for a job in the United States.
Eligibility for Form I-765
The form contains various questions that you need to answer when applying for the permit. Question 16 will pertain to information regarding your eligibility for a work permit. It contains 8 eligibility sections from which you need to select. The sections are as follows:
• Foreign student
• Nationality category
• Family-based non-immigrants
• Dependents of international organizations, NATO, or diplomatic missions
• Adjustment of status
• Refugee/asylee plus their children and spouses
• Employment-based non-immigrants
• Other categories
Each section is subdivided into more specific subsections. If you have lost your EAD or wish to renew it, you are eligible to file form I-765. On the other hand, you are not eligible for filing Form I-765 should you fall in any of the following categories:
• Conditional residency
• Lawful permanent residency
• Non-immigrant with special authorization for employment via form 8 CFR 274a.12(b)
Applying for a work permit in the United States is a straightforward process if you have the requirements. It is advised that you seek the help of an immigration attorney if you are not sure about the requirements. Your immigration lawyer will guide you to ensure you have a smooth process.
Typically, the application involves filling Form I-765 and submitting the duly completed form to the USCIS. The form must be accompanied by the following:
• Your photos
• Proof of eligibility for work permit
• Application fee
You can submit the form in one of the two ways - by mail or e-filing. E-filing is done online via a computer and you will need an internet connection to do so. Although the latter may be convenient, you will still need to submit your supporting documents via mail. To be on the safe side, be sure to retain copies of the documents you are mailing, just in case they fail to reach the intended destination.
Although you can complete the application process without the services of an immigration attorney, the use of an attorney will ensure an expedited process. The immigration lawyer is also handy in making sure you have all the necessary requirements before starting the application process.