What should I say of my political asylum to my employer?

When you arrive to the US to seek political asylum, you have the right to work as defined by USCIS. However, to make sure that there are no legal bars stopping an employer from hiring you, you need to fill out Form I-9, which is necessary to identify you and authorize you to work in the US.

On your Form I-9, you have to present your employment authorization, which includes:

  • Form I-94, Arrival-Departure Record, stamped by the inspector at the border or sea control, or an airport where you entered the US territory. On this form, there must be an indication Employment Authorized, granting you the right to work in the US. Note, however, that just Form I-94 gives you the right to work only for 90 days. You will have to provide other evidence to your employer.
  • Employment Authorization Document, or EAD, is the document issued by USCIS to asylees and refugees who want to obtain asylum for political or other legal grounds. Note that you don’t need to apply for this document to USCIS. You need to provide your EAD at the sea or border control.

Also note that if you received political asylum USA through the affirmative asylum process, the Asylum Office will automatically issue EAD to you. However, if you received asylum through the defensive process, meaning the immigration judge granted asylum to you, USCIS will provide you with further instructions on how to obtain EAD.

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