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Duncan J Reyneke

Impending Drivers License and EAD combo problem

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TL;DR my license is about to expire, the DMV isn't sure they can renew it without my EAD being renewed, and the EAD runs out next month. I forgot to renew it because I didn't anticipate my AOS taking a year to process and I'm freaking out.




I'm in a little bit of a bind. I'm sorry this is such a long story.


So we filed for my adjustment of status in February of this year and have had a nightmare of a time getting it through. No hold ups on our side but every kind of roadwork you can imagine from the USCIS. They lost my medical papers pretty early on and delayed the process by about two months. We refiled those and they went dormant for a long time.


After a lot of calling, we finally got the letter saying it was approved and we could expect the card within three months. After three months went by, I called and they submitted a request. A month after that they sent a letter saying the application was under review by an agent, effectively reopening it. Said to wait another month for confirmation. Waited. Heard nothing. Followed up recently (this had taken us neatly to the end of the year), and they sent another query and said to wait another month. They assure me I'll hear from them by the end of this month.


In the meantime, two things have come up and I'm afraid I've left then for too long. 


First, my driver's is about to expire (I've got one of those year long ones that come with this process). I went in last month and the guy told me to come in closer to the date it expires because, without my green card, they'll only be able to give me another year long one and I should try to get it for as close to a year from the original to maximize my time. He said they could do it with just my paperwork and marriage license and my wife's passport, on the spot. Fair enough. I went in today, with a week left on the thing, and he asked for my EAD card, which thankfully I had.


Then came the bombshell: he noticed I only have another month left on the thing. I completely forgot about it in the meantime because when I signed up for it they said I'd likely have my green card before ever having to renew. Obviously with all the delays, that didn't happen.


Now I have two problems: first, the DMV guy says I can bring in my 797 NOA for the 485 adjustment of status we filed initially. I'm going to go home and look for it because we have A MOUNTAIN of paperwork by this stage. All things being fair, it should be there, but the DMV guy says this situation is so muddled he isn't even sure if that will be enough. The EAD is my only status in the country and because that's about to expire, the only way to check if that will work is just to bring it in tomorrow and try it.


Joy. He have me another option: go home and, if I can, apply for the EAR renewal online. If they send me a receipt, bring that in and it should carry more weight and hopefully allow them to renew my license for another year. Once again, they won't know until they run the application tomorrow.


The second problem is the bigger one: my EAD may run out before I get approved for a renewal. Most online guides say to apply no later than 120 days before it runs out. I've got less than a month. I need to know what happens legally if it expires. Do I continue working in the meantime while I wait? Could I be in trouble? And what happens if it gets turned down for some unforeseeable reason? Also, do I need to spend $145 to apply ALL OVER again?


The USCIS has been NO help in telling me why my AOS is under review or when to expect an answer and I'm now officially running against a clock. 


I should have kept track of it, I just didn't expect it to run THIS long.



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Oh and just for clarification: my AOS is pending. I had the interview and everything was submitted. I'm reading now that an extension filed under circumstances where the AOS is pending are granted an automatic 180 day extension. This is a new regulation as of 2017. Is this true?

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Legally the employer has to let you go, since your EAD is no longer valid. 


I have never heard of AOS extension letters, either you get approved or denied for GC. What is extended is a EAD that had to be renewed, so they automatically give you 180 days in that letter. 

8/7/2017                    NOA-1

3/1/2018                    NOA-2

3/15/2018                  NVC case received

3/22/2018                  NVC case assigned

3/23/2018                  Consulate ready

4/11/2018                  Medical

4/17/2018                  Visa Approved

4/24/2018                  Visa on hand

5/23/2018                  Point of Entry ATL

5/24/2018                  Marriage license, officiant and certificate / applied for SS#

5/31/2018                  AOS/AP/EAD

6/7/2018                    email notification of NOA-1

6/11/2018                  NOA-1 hard copies for AOS/EAD/AP

6/27/2018                  Biometrics for AOS/EAD

7/7/2018                    ready to be scheduled for interview

7/11/2018                  We are still reviewing your case and there are no updates at this time (email from USCIS)

8/22/2018                  We are still reviewing your case and there are no updates at this time (same email again)

9/5/2018                     We are still reviewing your case and there are no updates at this time (this is getting boring!!!)

10/3/2018                  We are still reviewing your case and there are no updates at this time (this is insanity, 4th time while some got GC)

10/17/2018                After 136 days of wait in HELL, finally EAD in production

10/21/2018                Card was mailed to me, and yes it said so on a Sunday night, while Vj-ing

10/22/2018                Card was picked up by the USPS

10/24/2018                EAD in hand. F%^&& finally

12/28/2018                Interview has been scheduled. Waiting for notification with date by snail mail

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The AOS isn't being extended, they're just reviewing my case before approving. It's in limbo right now. I'm asking about if i apply to renew my EAD super late (30 days before expiration - I forgot) if I qualify for the 180 day work permit extension given that my AOS is currently under review.


This is the page on the USCIS for the extension. What I'm referring to is outlined as follows:


Starting Jan. 17, 2017, USCIS is automatically extending certain expiring EADs for up to 180 days for applicants who:

  • Properly filed for a renewal EAD before their current  EAD expired, and
  • Are otherwise eligible for a renewal...



Pending Adjustment of Status under Section 245 of the Act


Sorry if I was confusing in my outline

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3 hours ago, Duncan J Reyneke said:

Oh and just for clarification: my AOS is pending. I had the interview and everything was submitted. I'm reading now that an extension filed under circumstances where the AOS is pending are granted an automatic 180 day extension. This is a new regulation as of 2017. Is this true?

USCIS provides a free service called InfoPass that allows customers to schedule an appointment with USCIS through the internet. [3] Whenever possible, customers or their representatives who reside in the United States (domestically) should use InfoPass to schedule appointments if they would like to discuss their cases in person at their local USCIS field office. Customers and their representatives may also use InfoPass to cancel or reschedule appointments.




Customers residing overseas should review the International Immigration Offices overview page to determine which office has jurisdiction over their country of residence and information on scheduling appointments. They can stamp your passport with a I-551 stamp that puts you back in status and also they can give you a letter substantiating that. Of course this information about the stamp is what we did but it has been 5 years. But it would never hurt. Your still in "status" so no need worry.


Adjustment of Status

AOS March 5, 2014 Submitted AOS with EAD/AP package to Chicago USICS

Delivered March 8, 2014 AOS packaged delivered to USCIS drop box

Accepted March 19, 2014 Text message with receipt numbers

Biometrics April 16, 2014 Biometrics completed

EAD May 23, 2014 Employment Authorization Document approved and went to card production

TD May 23, 2014 Travel Document approved and went for card production

Receipt EAD/AP May 30, 2014 Received combo card EAD/AP

Green Card Approved July 11, 2014 Approved, no interview. Went to card production.

Green Card received July 17, 2014 GC received without interview

Removal of Conditions

Mailed I-751 Dec 16, 2015 Submitted ROC (removal of conditions)

Received Dec 18, 2015 USPS notification of successful delivery

Check Cashed Dec 21, 2015 Check was cashed

NOA-1 Issued Dec 21, 2015 NOA-1 for ROC issued

NOA-1 Issued Dec 26, 2015 NOA-1 Received

Biometrics Appt. Jan 29, 2016 Biometrics Appointment Scheduled [Completed]


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File a EAD renewal. Attach a copy of your I-485 NOA. You'll receive a letter with an automatic 180 day extension. 


2011-10-31 US Entry with CR1
2013-09-02 ROC filed
2013-09-12 NOA
2013-03-05 Biometrics
2013-03-24 Approved
2013-05-05 Green card received
2016-08-02 N400 filed
2016-08-12 NOA
2016-12-08 Biometrics
2017-05-04 Interview
2017-07-05 Oath Ceremony


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Moved from K1 Progress Reports to Adjustment of Status from K Visas Progress Reports.

Our journey:


September 2007: Met online via social networking site (MySpace); began exchanging messages.
March 26, 2009: We become a couple!
September 10, 2009: Arrived for first meeting in-person!
June 17, 2010: Arrived for second in-person meeting and start of travel together to other areas of China!
June 21, 2010: Engaged!!!
September 1, 2010: Switched course from K1 to CR-1
December 8, 2010: Wedding date set; it will be on February 18, 2011!
February 9, 2011: Depart for China
February 11, 2011: Registered for marriage in Wuhan, officially married!!!
February 18, 2011: Wedding ceremony in Shiyan!!!
April 22, 2011: Mailed I-130 to Chicago
April 28, 2011: Received NOA1 via text/email, file routed to CSC (priority date April 25th)
April 29, 2011: Updated
May 3, 2011: Received NOA1 hardcopy in mail
July 26, 2011: Received NOA2 via text/email!!!
July 30, 2011: Received NOA2 hardcopy in mail
August 8, 2011: NVC received file
September 1, 2011: NVC case number assigned
September 2, 2011: AOS invoice received, OPTIN email for EP sent
September 7, 2011: Paid AOS bill (payment portal showed PAID on September 9, 2011)
September 8, 2011: OPTIN email accepted, GZO number assigned
September 10, 2011: Emailed AOS package
September 12, 2011: IV bill invoiced
September 13, 2011: Paid IV bill (payment portal showed PAID on September 14, 2011)
September 14, 2011: Emailed IV package
October 3, 2011: Emailed checklist response (checklist generated due to typo on Form DS-230)
October 6, 2011: Case complete at NVC
November 10, 2011: Interview - APPROVED!!!
December 7, 2011: POE - Sea-Tac Airport

September 17, 2013: Mailed I-751 to CSC

September 23, 2013: Received NOA1 in mail (receipt date September 19th)

October 16, 2013: Biometrics Appointment

January 28, 2014: Production of new Green Card ordered

February 3, 2014: New Green Card received; done with USCIS until fall of 2023*


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