On Monday, USCIS announced a new rule that will affect the employment eligibility (EAD) requirements for asylum-seekers.  This new rule significantly changes the requirements for obtaining work authorization, including a one-year imposed wait time between applying for asylum and filing for employment authorization and ineligibility for people with certain convictions. Senior Attorney Adriana Robinson explains these concerning new regulations.

Some of the changes that we will see as a result of this new rule are:

  • All individuals seeking an EAD based on a pending asylum application must wait 365 days from the receipt of their asylum application before they can file an application for employment authorization.
  • Individuals who file their asylum application one year after their arrival to the U.S. will not be eligible for an EAD unless and until an asylum officer or an IJ determines that an exception to the one-year deadline applies.
  • In addition to aggravated felons, individuals convicted of certain lesser criminal offenses will not be eligible for an EAD.
  • Individuals who entered or attempted to enter without inspection will not be eligible for an EAD unless they qualify for one of the very limited exceptions.
  • USCIS will determine validity periods for initial and renewal EADs but such periods will not exceed two years. USCIS may set shorter validity periods. 
  • Applicant-caused delays unresolved by the date the application for an EAD is filed will result in the denial of the application for employment authorization.

On Monday the Trump Administration issued an Executive Order extending Presidential Proclamation 10014 and suspending entry of immigrants on certain temporary work visas, including H-1B, H-2B, L-1 and some J-1s. GYH Co-Managing Partners Becki Young and Sandra Grossman detail this unsettling announcement here.