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Question re: obtaining an offer letter to expedite EAD

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My wife and I will be filing an AOS soon based on her status as an F1 student visa holder. She is currently on OPT, which will expire in the summer. She is a teacher, so the OPT will expire prior to the start of the new school year. Given that receiving an EAD can take 4-6 months, we would like to expedite the EAD since there's a chance a non-expedited EAD would not come in time. Her employer (a school) has never (as far as we know) dealt with immigration issues before, so they are being extremely cautious.

 

We would like to receive an offer letter from the school stating that they intend to keep her on for the following year. We just wanted to confirm, however, that it is legal for an employer to give out an offer letter to someone for a period of time where that individual will not yet have work authorization. (It makes intuitive sense, since I imagine companies hire foreigners all the time, and then go through the visa process for them once the offer letter has been sent out). I did some googling, but have had some trouble finding literature that indicates that directly.


2019-03-19: AOS concurrent filing (I-130, I-485, I-765, I-131) sent; AOS from F-1 Visa

2019-03-21: AOS package received

2019-03-26: All NOA1s received (dated 3-21)

2019-04-05: Received biometrics notice

2019-04-08: Walk-in biometrics completed

2019-04-09: Called USCIS to expedite EAD

2019-04-10: Received email that case is ready to be scheduled for an interview

2019-04-16: Faxed USCIS supporting evidence for EAD expedite

2019-04-16: Received email that interview was scheduled

2019-05-02: Re-faxed EAD expedite evidence to USCIS; received confirmation Congress sent materials on our behalf

2019-05-06: confirmation that EAD expedite evidence received by USCIS

2019-05-09: EAD card in production!

2019-05-16: Combo EAD/AP card received in mail

2019-05-28: Green card approved at end of interview; email that case was approved received shortly after!

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Posted (edited)
31 minutes ago, NYC-AB said:

My wife and I will be filing an AOS soon based on her status as an F1 student visa holder. She is currently on OPT, which will expire in the summer. She is a teacher, so the OPT will expire prior to the start of the new school year. Given that receiving an EAD can take 4-6 months, we would like to expedite the EAD since there's a chance a non-expedited EAD would not come in time. Her employer (a school) has never (as far as we know) dealt with immigration issues before, so they are being extremely cautious.

 

We would like to receive an offer letter from the school stating that they intend to keep her on for the following year. We just wanted to confirm, however, that it is legal for an employer to give out an offer letter to someone for a period of time where that individual will not yet have work authorization. (It makes intuitive sense, since I imagine companies hire foreigners all the time, and then go through the visa process for them once the offer letter has been sent out). I did some googling, but have had some trouble finding literature that indicates that directly.

Yes, employers are allowed to give offers. Your wife is allowed to go to interviews and apply for jobs. She is just not allowed to work, when there is no work authorization. 

 

Expedited processing requires more than just a job offer. Lots of people have job offers and have to wait for EAD, or they had a job and their EAD expired and they have to stop working to wait for the new EAD

Expedited processing requires an emergency or severe financial losses, documented financial losses, not just because "I need to work".

 

USCIS reviews all expedite requests on a case-by-case basis and requests are granted at the discretion of the office leadership. The burden is on the applicant or petitioner to demonstrate that one or more of the expedite criteria have been met.

USCIS may expedite a petition or application if it meets one or more of the following criteria:

 

Severe financial loss to company or person;
Emergency situation;
Humanitarian reasons;
Nonprofit organization whose request is in furtherance of the cultural and social interests of the United States;
Department of Defense or national interest situation (These particular expedite requests must come from an official U.S. government entity and state that delay will be detrimental to the government.);
USCIS error; or
Compelling interest of USCIS

 

https://www.uscis.gov/forms/expedite-criteria

Edited by USS_Voyager

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3 minutes ago, USS_Voyager said:

Yes, employers are allowed to give offers. Your wife is allowed to go to interviews and apply for jobs. She is just not allowed to work, there is no work authorization. 

 

Expedited processing requires more than just a job offer. Lots of people have job offers and have to wait for EAD, or they had a job and their EAD expired and they have to stop working to wait for the new EAD

Expedited processing requires an emergency or severe financial losses, documented financial losses, not just because "I need to work".

 

USCIS reviews all expedite requests on a case-by-case basis and requests are granted at the discretion of the office leadership. The burden is on the applicant or petitioner to demonstrate that one or more of the expedite criteria have been met.

USCIS may expedite a petition or application if it meets one or more of the following criteria:

 

Severe financial loss to company or person;
Emergency situation;
Humanitarian reasons;
Nonprofit organization whose request is in furtherance of the cultural and social interests of the United States;
Department of Defense or national interest situation (These particular expedite requests must come from an official U.S. government entity and state that delay will be detrimental to the government.);
USCIS error; or
Compelling interest of USCIS

 

https://www.uscis.gov/forms/expedite-criteria

Thanks for confirming!

Understood that a job offer may very well be insufficient to expedite the EAD. I've searched the site and have seen some others have success, however, and we are of course going to try to submit additional documentation as evidence to support our request.


2019-03-19: AOS concurrent filing (I-130, I-485, I-765, I-131) sent; AOS from F-1 Visa

2019-03-21: AOS package received

2019-03-26: All NOA1s received (dated 3-21)

2019-04-05: Received biometrics notice

2019-04-08: Walk-in biometrics completed

2019-04-09: Called USCIS to expedite EAD

2019-04-10: Received email that case is ready to be scheduled for an interview

2019-04-16: Faxed USCIS supporting evidence for EAD expedite

2019-04-16: Received email that interview was scheduled

2019-05-02: Re-faxed EAD expedite evidence to USCIS; received confirmation Congress sent materials on our behalf

2019-05-06: confirmation that EAD expedite evidence received by USCIS

2019-05-09: EAD card in production!

2019-05-16: Combo EAD/AP card received in mail

2019-05-28: Green card approved at end of interview; email that case was approved received shortly after!

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Yup, no issue applying for work. Just don't actually work without authorization.

Good luck.


Timelines:

Spoiler

AOS (I-485 + I-131 + I-765):

9/25/17: sent forms to Chicago

9/27/17: received by USCIS

10/4/17: NOA1 electronic notification received

10/10/17: NOA1 hard copy received. Social Security card being issued in married name (3rd attempt!)

10/14/17: Biometrics appointment notice received

10/25/17: Biometrics

1/2/18: EAD + AP approved (no website update)

1/5/18: EAD + AP mailed

1/8/18: EAD + AP approval notice hardcopies received

1/10/18: EAD + AP received

9/5/18: Interview scheduled notice

10/17/18: Interview

10/24/18: Green card produced notice

10/25/18: Formal approval

10/31/18: Green card received

 

K-1:

Spoiler

I-129F

12/1/17: sent

12/14/17: NOA1 hard copy received

3/10/17: RFE (IMB verification)

3/22/17: RFE response received

3/24/17: Approved!

3/30/17: NOA2 hard copy received

 

NVC

4/6/2017: Received

4/12/2017: Sent to Riyadh embassy

4/16/2017: Case received at Riyadh embassy

4/21/2017: Request case transfer to Manila, approved 4/24/2017

 

K-1

5/1/2017: Case received by Manila (1 week embassy transfer??? Lucky~)

7/13/2017: Interview: APPROVED!!!

7/19/2017: Visa in hand

8/15/2017: POE

 

 

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21 hours ago, geowrian said:

Yup, no issue applying for work. Just don't actually work without authorization.

Good luck.

Thank you! A follow-up question:

 

One of the USCIS criteria is: "Nonprofit organization whose request is in furtherance of the cultural and social interests of the United States." Given that she works for a public school (and thus a non-profit organization), can we rely on this basis? Or is this criterion one that only applies when an employer is sponsoring an individual for work authorization (rather than AOS based on marriage)?


2019-03-19: AOS concurrent filing (I-130, I-485, I-765, I-131) sent; AOS from F-1 Visa

2019-03-21: AOS package received

2019-03-26: All NOA1s received (dated 3-21)

2019-04-05: Received biometrics notice

2019-04-08: Walk-in biometrics completed

2019-04-09: Called USCIS to expedite EAD

2019-04-10: Received email that case is ready to be scheduled for an interview

2019-04-16: Faxed USCIS supporting evidence for EAD expedite

2019-04-16: Received email that interview was scheduled

2019-05-02: Re-faxed EAD expedite evidence to USCIS; received confirmation Congress sent materials on our behalf

2019-05-06: confirmation that EAD expedite evidence received by USCIS

2019-05-09: EAD card in production!

2019-05-16: Combo EAD/AP card received in mail

2019-05-28: Green card approved at end of interview; email that case was approved received shortly after!

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15 minutes ago, NYC-AB said:

One of the USCIS criteria is: "Nonprofit organization whose request is in furtherance of the cultural and social interests of the United States." Given that she works for a public school (and thus a non-profit organization), can we rely on this basis? Or is this criterion one that only applies when an employer is sponsoring an individual for work authorization (rather than AOS based on marriage)? 

Every expedite request is discretionary and based upon the specific circumstances involved.

Personally, I would stick with the financial financial loss as this is a well-traveled path. No guarantees, but there are a lot of people who have done this with a job offer and been successful.

 

The "furtherance of the cultural and social interests" would be a tougher sell IMHO. I would chalk that one up to being more successful for things like charity work. I could be wrong, but it just seems like a tougher argument.


Timelines:

Spoiler

AOS (I-485 + I-131 + I-765):

9/25/17: sent forms to Chicago

9/27/17: received by USCIS

10/4/17: NOA1 electronic notification received

10/10/17: NOA1 hard copy received. Social Security card being issued in married name (3rd attempt!)

10/14/17: Biometrics appointment notice received

10/25/17: Biometrics

1/2/18: EAD + AP approved (no website update)

1/5/18: EAD + AP mailed

1/8/18: EAD + AP approval notice hardcopies received

1/10/18: EAD + AP received

9/5/18: Interview scheduled notice

10/17/18: Interview

10/24/18: Green card produced notice

10/25/18: Formal approval

10/31/18: Green card received

 

K-1:

Spoiler

I-129F

12/1/17: sent

12/14/17: NOA1 hard copy received

3/10/17: RFE (IMB verification)

3/22/17: RFE response received

3/24/17: Approved!

3/30/17: NOA2 hard copy received

 

NVC

4/6/2017: Received

4/12/2017: Sent to Riyadh embassy

4/16/2017: Case received at Riyadh embassy

4/21/2017: Request case transfer to Manila, approved 4/24/2017

 

K-1

5/1/2017: Case received by Manila (1 week embassy transfer??? Lucky~)

7/13/2017: Interview: APPROVED!!!

7/19/2017: Visa in hand

8/15/2017: POE

 

 

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3 minutes ago, geowrian said:

Every expedite request is discretionary and based upon the specific circumstances involved.

Personally, I would stick with the financial financial loss as this is a well-traveled path. No guarantees, but there are a lot of people who have done this with a job offer and been successful.

 

The "furtherance of the cultural and social interests" would be a tougher sell IMHO. I would chalk that one up to being more successful for things like charity work. I could be wrong, but it just seems like a tougher argument.

That makes sense. Her school has expressed a willingness to submit a letter on our behalf as well, so our hope is that, in theory, they could push the "cultural and social interests" angle (to the extent they are comfortable doing so) while we also pursue the financial loss angle as the primary means for expedition.


2019-03-19: AOS concurrent filing (I-130, I-485, I-765, I-131) sent; AOS from F-1 Visa

2019-03-21: AOS package received

2019-03-26: All NOA1s received (dated 3-21)

2019-04-05: Received biometrics notice

2019-04-08: Walk-in biometrics completed

2019-04-09: Called USCIS to expedite EAD

2019-04-10: Received email that case is ready to be scheduled for an interview

2019-04-16: Faxed USCIS supporting evidence for EAD expedite

2019-04-16: Received email that interview was scheduled

2019-05-02: Re-faxed EAD expedite evidence to USCIS; received confirmation Congress sent materials on our behalf

2019-05-06: confirmation that EAD expedite evidence received by USCIS

2019-05-09: EAD card in production!

2019-05-16: Combo EAD/AP card received in mail

2019-05-28: Green card approved at end of interview; email that case was approved received shortly after!

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