FORM I-765 | WORK PERMIT APPLICATION

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Why File Form I-765? 

There is more to U.S. immigration than just getting permission to enter the United States. Finally gaining entry to the U.S. is not the end of it. You still need to figure out how to build your life on this foreign soil. And what better way to start than to get a job? 

But before you begin job hunting, you must get permission to work. Just because you’ve been approved to enter does not mean you are allowed to work.  

That’s done with the Employment Authorization Document(EAD), more commonly known as a work permit or permiso

Working in the U.S. without a work permit will cause you serious immigration problems. Depending on how long you were working without a permit, you may be barred from obtaining permanent residence. Note: this includes self-employment! So, no matter the work you plan to do (short-term or long-term), you must get a work permit first. 

So, how do you get an EAD/Work permit? First, you must know whether you qualify for a work permit. If so, you will complete and file Form I-765. 

What Is Form I-765? 

Form I-765 is the Application For Employment Authorization Document. It is a request for an EAD/work permit. If you’ve just entered the U.S. temporarily and need a job, you must first get a work permit. And to do this, you will need to file Form I-765. 

Also, if you have applied for a green card, you may file this form while your application is processing. Doing this will allow you to work in the U.S. before you become a Lawful Permanent Resident. In essence, you’ll get a head start towards life in the United States. 

Note: If your Visa category naturally permits you to work in the U.S., you may still file Form I-765. It will allow you to obtain an EAD that proves that you have such permission. 

Who Should File Form I-765 

This form is not for everyone. There are certain Visa categories that need to file this form, and there are others that do not need to, and still others who cannot file it at all because they are not eligible to work. 

When you’re filing Form I-765, you will need to select which of the eligible visa categories you belong to. So, you need to file Form I-765 if you are in any of the following categories: 

  • Family-based nonimmigrant category 
  • Employment-based nonimmigrant category 
  • Adjustment of status category 
  • Foreign students category 
  • Eligible dependents of employees of diplomatic missions, international organizations, or NATO. 
  • Nationality category 
  • Asylee/Refugee category. 

Simple Instructions For Form I-765 

The first thing to do is to obtain a copy of the form.  

You can download the I-765 form pdf from the official USCIS website here. If downloading the form is not an option, you can request a copy from USCIS by calling 1-800-375-5283 

  • You must answer all questions accurately. 
  • The form must be filled in only black ink. You may type or print, but you must do so in black ink. 
  • Generally, only handwritten signatures will be accepted. Do not provide a stamped or typed signature – this will only delay your application. 

Note: this rule has been suspended during the COVID-19 pandemic, and USCIS will accept a digital or scanned copy of a signature to be submitted so long as it was originally signed in ink. This rule may change with very little notice, so the best practice is to submit wet-ink signatures. 

  • Your application must be submitted with proof of payment of the filing fees. Note: not all categories of work permit require a filing fee. You are responsible for determining whether the fee is applicable, and what it is. Some work permit categories also require a biometric (fingerprint) fee to be submitted, even if you have paid a biometric fee with another application already. 
  • You must submit all evidence or documents the same time you file the form. Note: You should only submit original documents if USCIS specifically requested them. 
  • All submitted evidence and supporting documents must be in the English language. If the original is in another language, you must submit a fully translated version of it. 

All of these are only simple instructions to help boost the chances of your application getting approved. However, you will find the full I-765 form instructions on the USCIS Form I-765 page of the USCIS website. 

Cons Of Filling The Form Incorrectly 

There are two different types of errors that could appear in your work permit application: Mistakes made by USCIS, and mistakes made by you. 

If the mistake was made by USCIS, it will be fixed without too much extra effort or filing fee. You will need to submit an amended application alerting USCIS to the error. However, if you filed the form incorrectly, you may need to file another I-765 form. Also, you will need to pay the filing fees again. 

If the work permit issues with incorrect information, you will face trouble in getting it recognized for other purposes such as social security, driver’s license, etc. And if you file a work permit without knowing whether you qualify, or with insufficient evidence, and do not have other status inside the US, filing the application could land you before an immigration judge in removal (deportation) proceedings! 

A denied work permit also means any work you perform may be considered unauthorized, which has very nasty consequences on your future with immigration. 

Get It Right The First Time! Consult Us! 

The moment you step on U.S. soil, the rush begins. You’ll need to make plans if you want to obtain a green card. That should be your priority: a work permit is necessary, sure – but it is not as important as a green card. 

We understand that you’ll naturally be eager to begin your journey in the U.S. However, this should not stop you from doing everything at a consistent pace. Don’t rush through the Form I-765 application process. While you need to act fast, you also need to do it right. If you jump right into it, you may end up filing for your work permit incorrectly. 

Incorrectly filing Form I-765 will cost you more of your time and money. Not only will you have to file the application again, but you will also pay the full fees again, and even include extra documents that weren’t included before. You have to get it right the first time! 

Leave your form application to The HMA Law Firm! Forget about worrying about the process – that’s our job! Yours is to worry about finding a job – or starting your own business. 

So, schedule a consultation with our experienced immigration attorneys today! We will help you kick-start your American dream! 

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