Business Immigration in a Minute by Honigman LLP
- U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (“USCIS”) published a temporary final rule announcing that it is increasing the automatic extension period applicable to expiring Employment Authorization Documents (“EADs”) for certain renewal applicants who have filed Form I-765 from up to 180 days to up to 540 days from the expiration date stated on their EADs. Noncitizens with a pending renewal application and valid EAD on May 4, 2022, or who timely file an EAD renewal application before October 27, 2023, will be granted an automatic extension of up to 540 days if their EAD expires before the renewal application is processed.
- To reduce wait times caused by an uptick in travelers entering the United States after the easing of many COVID-19 travel restrictions, U.S. Customs and Border Protection is urging travelers who require Form I-94 to apply and pre-pay online before arriving at the U.S.-Canada land border. A Form I-94 is needed by all visitors entering the United States, except U.S. citizens, returning resident aliens, aliens with immigrant visas, and most Canadian citizens visiting or in transit. Eligible individuals may apply for an I-94 in advance here to save time at the port of entry.
- U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement announced an extension of the flexibilities in rules related to Form I-9 compliance that were granted in 2020. Due to the continued precautions related to COVID-19, the Department of Homeland Security has extended this policy until October 31, 2022.
- In response to reports of the Social Security Administration (“SSA”) denying Social Security Numbers (“SSNs”) to E and L spouses in contravention of USCIS policy, the American Immigration Lawyers Association (“AILA”) reached out to the SSA to ensure that recent policy guidance regarding employment authorization incident to status for E and L spouses was being followed. On May 4, 2022, USCIS reported to AILA that the SSA plans to update its system to reflect the recent policy guidance by the end of this week. Until the SSA system is fully updated, a workaround has been communicated to SSA regional offices to ensure that there are no issues.
- USCIS announced that it is changing how it communicates case processing time data to the public. Changes include publicly posted processing times, a case inquiry tool, adding content to processing times webpages to increase transparency, and more. USCIS will host a webinar on May 12, 2022 from 2 – 3 PM ET regarding these upcoming changes. To register for the webinar, you may sign up here.