Employment Authorization Documents
Foreign nationals should be sure to get quality legal advice about their eligibility to pursue employment in the United States. Some visa types include employment authorization by default; others require the applicant to file a separate Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization, to request a work permit. Violating the terms and conditions of a nonimmigrant visa that does not permit employment can cause serious eligibility problems in future applications for other immigration benefits, so it’s critically important that foreign nationals fully understand their rights and limitations, even before taking up a side job during a period of nonimmigrant status.
Optional Practical Training is a temporary period of authorized employment offered to certain F-1 students studying in fields that may include practical training elements. Typically, F-1 student visas prohibit employment while attending the programs but OPT offers students an opportunity to explore their chosen career in the United States for a temporary period. Some OPT students use their OPT period as an opportunity to explore possible employer sponsors for a future, long-term immigration status.