EAD + Dependent Biometrics Updates!

USCIS has recently announced two EAD and dependent biometrics updates!

First, certain EADs (employment authorization documents) will be valid for five years, instead of two years. This includes EADs based on adjustment of status filings. In other words, when a foreign national submits Form I-485, application for adjustment of status here in the U.S., they can also apply for an EAD and for advance parole (AP, also called a travel document). Until now, USCIS has generally approved the EADs for two years. USCIS says that they made the change to reduce the administrative burden on both USCIS and applicants. While this is welcome news, it’s not necessarily a positive indication of anticipated USCIS processing times. However, as of the time of writing this blog post, October 2023, many marriage-based green card filings are being processed in a matter of months! Keep in mind also that USCIS is generally separating the processing of EADs and APs, so the AP will not necessarily be valid for 5 years.

Second, as of October 1, 2023, USCIS is no longer requiring the $85 biometrics fee for I-539 dependents. This fee was previously required for I-539 dependents. The fee was temporarily suspended for H-4, L-2, and E dependents and was set to go into effect again as of October 1, 2023. USCIS notes that dependents may still be called in for fingerprinting, and you should attend that appointment if it’s scheduled. In addition, if you pay the biometrics fee even though it’s not required, your case may be rejected if the fee payments are combined into one check.

If you are not yet a Sumner Immigration Law client and you’re looking for an experienced, empathetic, and efficient team to help you navigate the process with confidence, please contact us today to set up your initiation consultation to get the process started! You can set an appointment online. You can also call us at 804-396-3412 or send us an email at info@sumnerimmigration.com. We are immigration lawyers in Richmond, VA but we serve clients throughout the U.S. and around the world. For more information on our firm visit Who We Are and What Makes Us Different! We look forward to hearing from you!

As always, the above information is for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. Please speak with a qualified immigration lawyer before taking action.