Because of new reforms and daily demands in addition to COVID-19 related issues, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services are experiencing delays and intake issues that may affect your immigration application. Keep reading for more information.
Who Is Affected?
Immigrants applying through the following programs may be affected by delays:
- Form I-140, Immigrant Petition for Alien Workers
- Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status
- Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization (EAD)
Those who filed with a USCIS lockbox facility and/or filed a stand-alone Form I-485 from September-November 2020 will likely experience extreme delays.
The backlogs may be due to increased filings and/or fewer employees at processing locations due to COVID-19. Additionally, many immigrants with legal representatives are receiving case notifications before their attorneys.
Why Does This Matter?
In addition to reports of significant delays, there have also been widespread rejection notices from USCIS lockbox facilities. So far, the USCIS has cited missed pages, unchecked boxes, and invalid fee payments as reasons for rejection. However, if you receive a rejection notice, you may be able to resubmit your case.
For immigrants who applied for adjustment of status and/or EAD, significant delays of more than eight months may negatively affect your case. If more than six months have passed since the original submission, you should contact an attorney as soon as possible.
What Can I Do?
If you are experience delays or intake issues with your immigration application, you should speak to a legal representative about your options.
In the meantime, you may do the following to help your case:
- Request online filing for confirmation that your form(s) have been accepted to a USCIS processing facility
- Check the status of your application online through your USCIS online account
- Complete Form G-1145, e-Notification of Application/Petition Acceptance to receive a text notification or email regarding your application