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COVID19 Immigration Updates

This article is updated as new information regarding the impact of COVID-19 on immigration is released.

April 24, 2020

USCIS has announced that all routine in-person services have been suspended until at least June 4th, 2020, but has continued to fulfill roles that do require public interaction.

USCIS will provide emergency services for limited situations. To schedule an emergency appointment contact the USCIS Contact Center.

April 23, 2020

The executive order will not apply to:

  • Temporary visas (student visas, H1-B visas, etc.)
  • Green card applicants filing from within the United States (“adjustment of status“)
  • Spouses or minor children of U.S. citizens
  • Special Immigrant Visas or EB-5 (“immigrant investor”)

It will affect:

  • Spouses of legal permanent residents (green card holders) filing from abroad (consular processing). Spouses and minor children of U.S. citizens filing abroad are exempt.
  • Siblings, parents, and adult children of U.S. citizens filing from abroad.

April 3, 2020

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) released updates on their response to COVID-19. They stated that, “Detainee access to legal representatives remains a paramount requirement and should be accommodated to the maximum extent practicable. Legal visitation must continue unless determined to pose a risk to the safety and security of the facility”. In addition, where possible non-contact legal visitation should be offered. If it is determined that in-person visitation be necessary it will be permitted.

April 1, 2020

USCIS has announced that all routine in-person services have been temporarily suspended until at least May 3rd, 2020, but has continued to fulfill roles that do require public interaction. USCIS will provide emergency services for limited situations. To schedule an emergency appointment contact the USCIS Contact Center.

What this means for pending applications: No biometric appointments or interviews are currently being held. In cases where a biometrics is required and still incomplete that means that applications for work and travel authorization are not being processed at this time. Currently cases that require an interview will also remain pending until an interview can be scheduled.

March 30, 2020

USCIS announced that extension requests will reuse previously submitted biometrics in order to continue processing Employment Authorization Document (EAD) renewals.

March 27, 2020

USCIS issues an announcement that all responses to Requests for Evidence (RFE) and Notice of Intent to Deny (NOID) dated between March 1 and May 1, 2020 will be given an extension of 60 days from the date previously set to be due.

March 21, 2020

Policies between the United States and both Canada and Mexico go into place. These policies restrict non-essential travel across both borders. Travel will be permitted for matters such as work, school, and healthcare.

March 20, 2020

USCIS announces that they will accept all forms and documents with reproduced signatures dated March 21, 2020 and beyond. 

 U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services today announced that, due to the ongoing COVID-19 National Emergency announced by President Trump on March 13, 2020, we will accept all benefit forms and documents with reproduced original signatures, including the Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker, for submissions dated March 21, 2020, and beyond. Keep copies of all original documents with signatures in case called upon to present them to USCIS as a later date.

Marcy 17, 2020

 USCIS has announced that all routine in-person services have been temporarily suspended until at least April 1, 2020, but has continued to fulfill roles that do require public interaction. USCIS will provide emergency services for limited situations. To schedule an emergency appointment contact the USCIS Contact Center.

What this means for pending applications: No biometric appointments or interviews are currently being held. In cases where a biometrics is required and still incomplete that means that applications for work and travel authorization are not being processed at this time. Currently cases that require an interview will also remain pending until an interview can be scheduled.

March 13, 2020

USCIS announced that seeking treatment for COVID-19 will not negatively impact immigrants under public charge.

Travel restrictions to the US are put into place from two dozen European countries. This restriction does not apply to US citizens and  permanent residents, their spouses, their unmarried siblings under 21, and their children.

* March 14th Ireland and England are added to list of restricted travel.

Updated on April 24, 2020

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