My story of iEAD

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United States

Here's my story of getting the interim EAD.

Applied electronically for renewal on Jan 5, 2004 at VSC, with notice date Jan 6, 2004. Went to Newark, NJ on April 15, 2004. I got it without much hassle, except for the wait.
Valid from 2004/04/15 till 2004/12/15.

Now for the long story...
Reached 970 Broad St at about 5:30AM and there were already about 35-40 people in front of me. Waited until about 8:15AM for my turn to enter the line inside the building. At about 7:30, the BCIS officials started taking rounds, asking if anyone had an appointment. There was a separate line for such people. They could come in at 7:45 and almost just walk in, while others such as myself had to wait outside for 3 hours in the cold breezy weather.

Anyway, after security check, went to 2nd floor, room 200. Now, all the rooms have the numbers written next to the door at about 5 ft from the floor. Not for room 200 - where "everyone who don't know already where to go, must go" according to the lady who handed out yellow paper cards while waiting outside. Entrance to this room is next to elevators, so if you are not careful, or if you took the other set of elevators to go up, you might just miss it completely.

After standing in line in the roomfor about 5 minutes, a lady went around asking if anyone was there was iEAD. Then she asked all of us to stand next to the wall as there was a 'dedicated' officer to handle these cases.
I had taken the following documents along:
Covering letter
Application for Employment Authorization (I-765)
Copy of the Confirmation Receipt for my last application I-765
Copy of the Notice of Action for my last application I-765
Copy of each of my previous two Employment Authorization Cards
Copy of the Notice of Action for my Application to Adjust to Permanent Resident Status (I-485) that is pending at Vermont Service Center
Copy of Authorization for Parole of an Alien into the United States
Copy of passport pages. These include information about my passport number, date of birth, place of birth, permanent address in India, current I-94
My turn came after about 15 minutes, not bad I thought. The lady checked my passport, kept the form (newly filled) and copy of the original receipt and returned everything else.

After about 1/2 hour, another lady called my name, handed me an envelope and asked to go to 13 floor, room 1300, counter #2.
I handed the envelope to another lady there and sat in a quiet corner. Oh, this was some wait! For more than 3 hours, I was waiting anxiously for someone to call my name. Finally one gentleman started calling out names of people who'd submitted the envelope at counter #2 along with me, and finally I heard my name.

He asked to check the passport, then asked questions, which I couldn't imagine asking anyone older than a 2nd standard kid. He had my form, my passport in front of him and he was asking my name, address, DOB - "just to confirm that all the data was correct". Then he asked to see my 140 approval - which I didn't have. For a moment there I thought all the wait was a waste, but he didn't seem to mind that after all. He asked me to go to room 1304, where, I'd gathered earlier, they were taking photos and fingerprints. So I was relieved when he asked me to go there as it meant he'd, presumably, approved my case.

After another 1/2 hour wait, they called me for photo and fingerprint. I was out in another 15 minutes.

All in all, the wait was the killing factor, other things went smoothly.

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