Start of unemployment clock for OPT period


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I have applied for an EAD card after my graduation (post-completion OPT). I had requested a start date of July 7th for the EAD card. USCIS is yet to make a decision in my case and the status of my application is still pending.

My question is about the unemployment clock and when does it exactly start? If receive my EAD card (or the decision) only after October 7th, then the moment I have the card, I would have already exceeded the 90-day unemployment window given for students in post-completion OPT. This would be the case if the unemployment clock starts on the start date mentioned on the EAD card. Since I requested a start date of July 7th, would it make my stay in US post October 7th immediately illegal? Or does the unemployment clock start from the date on which a decision has been made on my application?



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