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Work in the U.S. with a work permit (EAD)

As a nonimmigrant visa holder, you may be able to work in the U.S. temporarily with a work permit (Employment Authorization Document or EAD). Learn if you qualify and how to apply.

Learn about work permits (EADs)

Nonimmigrant visa holders are typically required to have a work permit (EAD) before being hired to work in the U.S. 

In most cases, lawful or conditional permanent residents and nonimmigrants authorized to work in the U.S. for a specific employer may not need a work permit.

Find out which visa categories are eligible to file Form I-765 for a work permit, beginning on page 1 of the Instructions for Application of Employment Authorization.

Learn more about the work permit (EAD), including:

  • How to renew an EAD
  • How to replace a lost or stolen EAD card

How to apply for a work permit (EAD)

To apply for your work permit (EAD), file an Application for Employment Authorization (Form I-765), review the instructions, and pay the filing fee.

Depending on your immigration category, your EAD work permit will be good for 1 or 2 years. If the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) approves your request, they may send your EAD in the mail. Or you may be required to get it in person. Find your nearest USCIS office.

LAST UPDATED: December 15, 2023


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