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Work/Travel options after 485 : H1 Versus EAD/AP Work/Travel options after 485 : H1 Versus EAD/AP. Comparison between keeping H1 versus forfeiting H1 and using EAD/AP after 485 filing.

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Old 08-03-2010, 08:14 PM
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Default necessary to renew EAD?

I am currently on H1B and have an approved EAD, 140 and pending 485. My H-1B is valid for another 2 yrs or so. Do I have to keep renewing my EAD even if I am not using it?

and also if in future when i do apply for EAD will it be considered new or renewal because of not applying before expiry.

Thanks!
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Old 08-03-2010, 09:12 PM
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Originally Posted by chaitu View Post
I am currently on H1B and have an approved EAD, 140 and pending 485. My H-1B is valid for another 2 yrs or so. Do I have to keep renewing my EAD even if I am not using it?

and also if in future when i do apply for EAD will it be considered new or renewal because of not applying before expiry.

Thanks!
When one applies for adjustment of status, ie the i485 form process, and when it is pending, you are allowed to apply for EAD and AP. But applying for EAD and AP is not compulsory. They are just added benefits, which you can avail if you want to. EAD allows the person to work and AP allows you a way to re-enter the USA if you leave USA for any reason.

Technically since you are NOT using your EAD, although you have it in your hand; that you are still using H1 as the eligibility to work in USA (via the i9 form), you can continue to work for next 2 years. Question is if you want to switch to another employer and if he is not ready to do an h1 transfer, or lacks the department to get such transfers done, then he/she may ask you if u have an EAD, most employers like EAD people. Its easy to hire them. So technically I would recommend renewing it always and keeping it handy, because renewal takes 3 months and a measly $300+ will help you if you accidently get laid off and want to switch to a new job using an existing EAD. But again renewing or having an EAD is not compulsory. One thing you do have to note that once you use your EAD, you get out of H1 status. To come back on H status you will have to exit USA, re-enter on h1 visa.

When you dont apply for renewal after the expiry of EAD, then its considered as a new application. Read the i765 instructions for more accurate details on it.

One thing that will also benefit you is, after 6 years on h1, normally h1 renewals are for 1 year only, you have to renew each year, but if you have an approved 140, then h1 renewals done by USCIS are for 3 years.

Please do note that as per law h1 and l1 people are allowed to have a "dual intent" status, that is, while their immigrant intent via the 485 process is pending, they are allowed to also keep their h1's (non immigrant status). This is useful because if 485 gets rejected for any reason, and if you were using EAD, you can continue to work on h1.

I basically recommend that you always keep renewing EAD; use it or not is a not important or is a different ball game; I also recommend renewing your h1 as a backup.
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