Virginia, US

Apr 24 2020

Local USCIS Offices Extend Suspension of In-Person Services Until At Least June 3

United States

At a glance

  • As part of its COVID-19 response, USCIS will extend its suspension of in-person interviews and biometrics appointments at local offices until at least June 3.
  • Foreign nationals with green card interviews, naturalization interviews/ceremonies or biometrics appointments scheduled during the closure will continue to receive notices that their appointments have been cancelled. The appointments will be automatically rescheduled.

The issue

In a continued response to COVID-19, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will extend its public closure of local field offices and Application Support Centers (ASCs), suspending in-person services now until at least June 3. The original suspension took effect on March 18 and has been extended twice, most recently through May 3.

During the temporary suspension, USCIS will not conduct in-person biometrics appointments at ASCs or green card or naturalization interviews or naturalization ceremonies at local field offices. The agency will continue to provide limited emergency services only in certain circumstances.

Foreign nationals with appointments scheduled during the closure will receive cancellation and rescheduling notices by mail. Green card and naturalization interviews, naturalization ceremonies and biometric service appointments will automatically be rescheduled after USCIS local offices resume in-person services. In some cases, biometrics rescheduling should not be necessary given USCIS’s announcement that it would process Form I-765 Employment Authorization Document renewal applications using biometrics previously collected from applicants.

USCIS Service Centers, where most immigration benefit applications and petitions are adjudicated, are not affected by this suspension.

What this means for employers and foreign nationals

The continued suspension means that the final adjudication of applications requiring interviews and/or biometrics – including applications for adjustment of status, initial Form I-765 applications requiring biometrics, and nonimmigrant extensions and changes of status on Form I-539 – may be delayed until in-person services resume. Delays in Form I-539 processing could also delay employment authorization applications for H-4, L-2, and E nonimmigrant spouses.

Fragomen is closely monitoring U.S. immigration operations during the COVID-19 response and will provide updates as the situation evolves. 

This alert is for informational purposes only. If you have any questions, please contact the immigration professional with whom you work at Fragomen.