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What is the difference between OPT EAD and AOS EAD?

Plano, TX |


I am currently on F1 OPT(17th month extension) which expires in June 2012. My husband would be applying for I-485(EB2) soon, considering the PD becomes current. My questions are,

1. Is it advisable to apply for an AOS EAD for me, along with I-485 or should I apply for an H-1B sponsored by my employer?
2. Is the OPT EAD considered different from the AOS EAD, though they use the same form I-765 ? If no, do i have to apply for AOS EAD, atleast 120 days prior to my current EAD expiration?
Also, what is the processing time for AOS EAD? And suppose it doesnt come in time, before OPT EAD expires, can I still apply for H-1B to continue working?

Thanks in advance!

Attorney Answers 3


All Employment Authorization Documents (EADs) look the same; what differs is the section of law under which the individual qualified to have the card issued. Under your scenario, it might make more sense for you to apply for the EAD based on the adjustment of status filing you are hoping to do. I say this for two reasons:

1. There is no additional cost for the I-765 filing when done concurrently with the I-485;
2. The EAD is not tied to a specific employer, which means you can change jobs more easily.

Since your husband is the principal applicant, based on his employment, it is likely that the attorney for his employer will also be handling both your husband's paperwork and yours. You should relly be speaking with this attorney about these issues.

Good luck to you both!

This answer is of a general nature and should not be relied upon as final, nor is it intended as legal advice. A consultation with an experienced attorney is always the best way to go.

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When you apply for adjustment of status through marriage to a U.S. citizen, you automatically will apply for an EAD at the same time. You will get the EAD within 90 days, so it is probably a waste of money to apply for an H-1B. However, this is a personal decision. This EAD will enable you to work in any occupation for any employer, while under your current EAD, you must work in a STEM occupation for an E-Verify employer.

Please see

(213) 394-4554 x0 Mr. Shusterman is a former INS Trial Attorney (1976-82) with over 35 years of immigration experience. His response to your question is general in nature, as not all the facts are known to him. You should retain an attorney experienced in immigration law to review all the facts in your case in order to receive advice specific to your case. Mr. Shusterman's statement above does not create an attorney/client relationship.

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My husband is on H-1B. if I choose to go with AOS EAD, does that pose any risks in future for my status, if any problems are encountered in the GC application?


I agree with Mr. Glickman. You should file for adjustment with your husband. DO NOT file for the H1-b through your employer. Have the attorneys file for the EAD through the AOS, because it can be renewed until the adjustment process is completed. An OPT EAD cannot easily be renewed. The AOS EAD may take close to a hundred days, but could be sooner based upon the situation. Contact your husband's attorney for more information.

This is general information, not legal advice, and does not create an attorney client relationship.

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