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Wilton A. Person
Wilton A. Person, Immigration Lawyer
Category: Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 4147
Experience:  Knowledgeable and experienced immigration lawyer.
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Can someone work in the U.S while waiting for their green card

Resolved Question:

Can someone work in the U.S while waiting for their green card (through marriage) to be approved?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Immigration Law
Expert:  Wilton A. Person replied 6 years ago.

Yes, you can submit USCIS Form I-765, Employment Authorization Document, with your green card application, USCIS Form I-485. There is no additional fee if submitted with the I-485.


The EAD as it is normally called is usually approved between three to four months and you would be able to legally work with this document while your I-485 is pending. In the alternative, you could renew your work visa if feasible.


Please find below an overview of the process for your I-130/I-485 petition/application below:


Your spouse would file the I-130/I-485 Packet (I-130)(Petition for Alien Relative). The entire process takes a little over a year and would require that you take a Biometrics exam and that you and your spouse be interviewed by a USCIS officer who will determine if you married for the purpose of obtaining an immigration benefit.


The I-130/1-485 packet is found at the USCIS website at The marriage certificate is required before you start the process for your green card.


You and your spouse should file the following forms with supporting documents:


I-130-your spouse's petition

I-485-green card application

I-765 -Work permit application

G-325A-biographic form for both of you

I-864-Affidavit of support



Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Are you saying that it would take 3-4 months after filing for a green card to get the authorization to work and that I would not be able to work for 3-4 months? If that is the case, is there a way to expedite that?
Expert:  Wilton A. Person replied 6 years ago.

Yes, unless you were to renew your current work visa.


USCIS is required by law to process the EAD within 90 days. However, this does not always happens which is why there is a pending lawsuit against USCIS with respect to the EAD processing times.



Here is a link to the USCIS expedite criteria and procedures:







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