USCIS Opens Employment Authorization (EAD) for Palestinians Under Deferred Enforced Departure

Schedule Your Consultation
Palestinian flag

In a significant announcement by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Palestinians covered under Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) now have a pathway to legally work in the United States through August 13, 2025. This comes after President Biden’s decision on February 14, 2024, to defer the removal of certain Palestinians. Read on to learn more about this latest development, what it means for Palestinians, and how they can apply for an Employment Authorization Document (EAD).

What is Deferred Enforced Departure (DED)?

DED is a discretionary decision made by the President to protect a group of individuals from deportation. For Palestinians, this decision means that those who were in the United States as of February 14, 2024, can stay and work until the specified date in 2025. It’s important to note that individuals who arrived after this date are not eligible for DED.

Who is eligible for DED and how can they apply for an Employment Authorization Document (EAD)?

Eligible Palestinians are those who were present in the U.S. on or before February 14, 2024. These eligible Palestinians can apply for an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) by submitting Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization. Applicants must provide acceptable documentation, such as a Palestinian Authority passport or identification card.

The USCIS is committed to processing these applications efficiently and fairly, adhering to humane standards. As part of this commitment, the agency has made strides over the past year to reduce processing times for EADs, ensuring a smoother experience for applicants.

What benefits does this announcement bring to Palestinian F-1 nonimmigrant students?

In conjunction with the DED announcement, there is also Special Student Relief for Palestinian F-1 nonimmigrant students. This allows eligible students to seek employment authorization, work additional hours while school is in session, and reduce their course load while maintaining their F-1 status throughout the DED period.

What should Palestinians know about travel during the DED period?

For those Palestinians under DED wishing to travel outside the U.S., it’s necessary to file Form I-131, Application for Travel Document. This form is crucial for ensuring that travel during this period does not impact their immigration status or their eligibility under DED.

If you have further questions or need assistance with any immigration-related matter, please don’t hesitate to contact the Lightman Law Firm today.