USCIS has announced today that the 30-day guarantee processing for work authorization cards for asylum applicants has been removed. The proposal was first announced in September 2019 and made official today. Under the new provisions, USCIS no longer guarantees to process work authorization applications in 30 days, instead the processing time required will depend on the service center’s workload.
Initial applications for employment authorization from pending asylum applicants was previously the only category of employment authorization applications adjudicated by USCIS that have a required processing timeline attached to them. Because of this, the agency must frequently divert resources away from other legal immigration application processing categories in order to meet the 30-day deadline for asylum seekers. These new rules will allow USCIS the time needed to receive, screen, and process applications, which in turn would strengthen national security, maintain technological advances in identity verification, and further deter those who may be attempting to defraud the legal immigration system under an improved process.
Asylum is a humanitarian immigration benefit applied for by individuals who fear severe harm or persecution if they return to their country of origin. For more information on asylum and other humanitarian relief, please click here. Applicants can file for employment authorization 180 days after an application is filed. For more information about this, please click here.
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