No official change has been announced, yet anecdotal reports suggest a trend of delays for Forms I-765, Application for Employment Authorization (EAD) and I-131, Application for Advance Parole (AP).
Reports indicate that EAD applications are taking approximately 4.5 to 5+ months to process, with some even taking up to 7 months for completion. AP applications are taking as long as 5 months to process.
This is not encouraging news. A pending EAD can cause serious disruptions in employment, as well as posing an obstacle for drivers license renewals in some states.
There has also been a shift in AP denials recently. For those who are able to travel using a non-immigrant visa, such as an H-1B or L-1, leaving a pending AP before it's approved will result in a denial. Travel plans should be discussed in advance with your trusted advisor.
Can't we just file earlier?
In most cases, the earliest that an EAD can be filed is 180 days ahead of expiration. This is reduced to 90 days for those filing for OPT based EADs. Individuals are strongly encouraged to have renewal applications ready for submission at the earliest possible date to avoid employment interruption.