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Navigating Work Authorization (I-765): The Immigration Work Permit
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Do you have a permit for work authorization (I-765)? Legally residing in the United States isn’t an automatic pass into the working world, whether you live in the country temporarily or permanently. If you’re in the process of applying for a green card, Optional Practical Training, or a nonimmigrant visa, navigating the work authorization (I-765) permit process is crucial before completing paid work in the United States.
It’s extremely important that you seek legal advice from professionals like ours on how your work plans may compromise your application. If you don’t request employment authorization to work in Nashville, TN, you may risk your immigration status. The team at Colavecchio and Colavecchio law firm can help you complete an employment authorization document, provide legal advice, and walk you through the application process or denied requests.
The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Employment Authorization Document
Filing an application for employment authorization takes several steps. The first is to determine if any other applications may authorize you to work in the United States. For example, nonimmigrant status visas may grant eligibility for you to work temporarily until the visa expires.
If you are not a green card holder and want to register permanent residence in the United States, you need to gather the required documentation in the proper order to avoid hassles with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration departments. The document granting permission to work locally is referred to as Form I-765: the Application for Employment Authorization Document (EAD).
Filing Form I-765 isn’t difficult, and approval quickly leads to an EAD work permit that allows you legal employment in the United States. If you’re not sure about your eligibility category, it’s wise to exercise caution around paid work opportunities. Instead, talk to the immigration attorneys at Colavecchio and Colavecchio about whether it will risk your application.
Do I Need a Form I-765?
It’s not always clear whether a visa allows you to seek out work in the United States. For example, some documents only allow you to work for a specific employer, while others will allow you to seek work anywhere. Other visas don’t allow you to work at all within the United States’ borders.
If you don’t have a green card, but you’ve determined that you can work in the United States with an authorization card, the next step is filing Form I-765. You can do this by requesting a copy of the USCIS form from the related government agency or filing in the Form I-765 application online.
You can still apply for work authorization (I-765) if you’ve already filed for a green card (in case you want to work during the approval process).
The I-765 Process
The process is straightforward, whether you file online or by hand. After you receive the unsigned form, you’ll need to compile several supporting documents and pay a filing and biometrics fee. However, you can receive a filing fee waiver if you complete your I-765 at the same time as your green card application—a smarter course of action for those who are eligible.
The renewal process for the EAD is easier than the initial filing process. If you’ve already filed for a green card and decided to file an I-765 afterward, you will need the following documents:
- Previous work permits
- A copy of your passport photo
- A copy of your United States visa
- A copy or printout of your I-94 travel record (if possible)
- Two recent 2×2 photographs of yourself with your full name and Alien Registration Number printed on the back
- A copy of your official acknowledgment letter, if necessary
You need all the above documents for the initial EAD and for renewal. However, to renew EAD permits does not require the following documentation (it only applies to applicants who have not received a work permit previously):
- Your photo ID and birth certificate
- A national identity document or fingerprint (or both)
- A copy of a non-US visa
After you’ve gathered all of your documents for the original or renewal EAD and paid the filing fee, you can fill out the I-765 form according to the written instructions, with the correct filing address. Then, drop off the entire work permit packet at the appropriate filing location and attend your biometrics appointment to gather any required physical data, including fingerprints.
Contact Colavecchio and Colavecchio For I-765 Advice Today
Do you have any questions about the work permit application process? Was your I-765 denied? Contact our experienced immigration law firm at 615-242-3333 today for advice on how to navigate the United States work permit applications in Nashville and the rest of Tennessee.