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Immigration status and work rights in South Carolina

A lawsuit was filed in federal court in Seattle on May 23 alleging that federal officials have delayed in providing some immigrants with employment authorization documents. In most cases, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services will review an immigrant's work status within 90 days. Cases involving those who have applied for asylum may be reviewed in as little as 30 days.

In the event that there is a delay in reviewing an immigrant's work status, that person is supposed to get interim employment authorization. This authorization is valid for 240 days, and immigrants may lose their ability to work without such a document. The case is seeking class action status.

One of the plaintiffs is a woman from Illinois who lost her job when her permit expired in April 2015 and had not yet been renewed. She had been given initial clearance to work for two years because she was part of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. Another plaintiff from the state of Washington says that she applied for renewal in January 2015 and had not heard anything about her case. The USICS has not commented on the matter as it is an ongoing issue.

Business professionals may be allowed to come to the United States and gain employment while in the country legally. However, failure to obtain authorization to work in the country could result in an individual being let go from their current position. Therefore, it may be worthwhile to talk to an attorney who may be able to review the case and determine the appropriate steps to take. An attorney may ultimately be able to help an individual obtain employment authorization or obtain interim approval to find employment until a final decision can be made.

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