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10 March 2010

USCIS Welcomes You to The Beacon

Welcome to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services' blog, "The Beacon." We established this forum to allow us to listen and learn from our readers, and to serve as an opportunity for discussion of relevant USCIS, citizenship and immigration issues.

We have assembled a team to author posts and respond to comments to best foster dialog and answer questions related to the USCIS mission and our work. While we will not respond to all comments, we will do our best to ensure that this blog is a timely, two-way conversation. We want you to be the driving force behind the conversation and encourage you to join the conversation by posting comments with your ideas, concerns, and constructive criticism.

We planned to launch this site in March, but as you can see from the entries below, the earthquake in Haiti prompted us to start blogging ahead of schedule. As we move forward, you can expect posts on a variety of citizenship and immigration-related topics from our team, as well as the occasional post by me and other guest authors.

That said, here are questions I have to get the conversation started:
  • What issues would you like to see discussed on the Beacon blog and why?
  • What can USCIS do to better serve you and those who use our services; what suggestions and constructive criticism do you have?
  • What can USCIS do to better communicate with you?

Please leave your responses in the comments section below and review our comment policy.

247 Comments:

1 – 200 of 247 Newer› Newest»
At March 11, 2010 at 9:15:00 AM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

We ask the USCIS to provide more detailed information about the employment-based green card backlog:

While we applaud the efforts that the USCIS has made in making the employment-based backlog open to the public, many of us would like to have a better understanding of the actual employment-based green card backlog.

We feel that this is extremely important so that we have a better idea of where we stand in line and how many years (or decades) we have ahead of us. With that in mind, we would be extremely grateful if you could provide the public with information about:

1. The next publication date of the USCIS TSC and NSC I-485 quarterly reports. We would like to ensure that the USCIS will be consistent in providing this information to the public.

2. We also understand that there are employment based AOS cases pending at other locations in the USCIS, such as the District Offices. Could you provide detail on the number of I-485 applications that are pending or outstanding at such offices?

3. We would also like to have better information about the number and type of I-485s that the USCIS is approving. Can you provide detail on the number of I-485 applications broken down by country of chargeability and priority dates that have been approved from the beginning of the fiscal year?

 
At March 11, 2010 at 9:15:00 AM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for the Beacon, its good to know the USCIS is interested in hearing from its clients on an informal level.
On the questions you raised
1.I think that when there is change in filing processes or destinations of applications, we should be updated rapidly on how that is working so we are not in a vacuum of information. For example with the new lock boxes in Phoenix and Dallas , there has not been feedback if your application was sent there after February 25th.
2.If USCIS can rapidly indicate that your application is accepted, that removes room for rumor and speculation and anxiety by many clients.That alone will greatly improve perception of efficiency of the USCIS. Thanks

 
At March 11, 2010 at 10:07:00 AM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is great service ! Thanks. One question that comes up among various immigration applicants is how do they cancel an existing G-28 attorney representation forms for I-485 / I-765 / I-131 and redirect all future communications to themselves. USCIS web pages do not seem to address this in any actionable way. Some say a phone call to customer service will do. Others feel writing a letter can make it happen or filing another G-28 is the only way to do it. If you can clarify the same it will help immigrants save attorney fees (G-28 filing) and use their services only when absolutely necessary.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 10:09:00 AM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Given the arrogance, incompetency and almost dictatorial mentality shown by USCIS staff, Regional Directors to Adjudicating Officers (In my personal experience, I had to tell an Adjudicating Officer, presumably at Vermont, that she is talking to a human being and not an animal, please show some courtesy), I wonder if this blog makes any sense. The moral, ethical and professional desire for change should come from within and not from comments posted herein. To begin with Adjudicating Officers should be held accountable for their mistakes (e.g., provision to sue them for issuing irrelevant RFEs or causing undue and unnecessary delays, bringing misery and mental anguish to many) and not hide behind the disguised number, e.g.,xm300. If a communication (of any kind) is mailed to USCIS, it should promptly acknowledge with a letter. For example, we have received your request for XYZ and we are looking into this matter...

Given that no one has posted any comments shows how scared people are to post their comments, probably fearing reprisal from adjudicating officers that they will vent their vengeance on them.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 10:13:00 AM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am also interested in more information about the green card backlogs (in my case employment based green card backlogs, but presumably others are intersted in family-based as well).

I am glad you are making the effort to listen to people. It's very appreciated.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 10:20:00 AM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would like to see a blog entry which discusses your IT systems and their role and ability to provide more transparency to the applicants.

What do you have now?
What challenges do they present in providing timely, accurate data?
What are you doing to address any deficiencies?
What are the timescales?
What additional data do you believe you will be able to provide in the future and when?

As a specific example, do you plan to provide, in conjunction with DOS, (similar to the Annual Visa Report) quarterly reports showing at least "indicative" visa consumption during the FY by EB category, Country or Country within EB Category?

This a vital piece of information that is currently lacking.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 10:32:00 AM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is indded frustrating that there is a lack of transparency on the part of USCIS. President Obama did promise to streamline procedures and to ensure that there is transprancy. To-date, USCIS has not been able to provide "accurate" - and this is the key word - data on existing backlogged applications as well as number of available visas. Also, how visas are actually being given out is still a mystery - how is the spillover caluculated from one category to the next? It is time for USCIS to take the initiative and follow through on the promises made by the President. ALso, USCIS should note that those in the line are LEGALLY here and that they are HUMAN BEINGS. It seems that more emphasis is given to illegals while those here legally are treated as 3rd class animals.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 10:48:00 AM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

This blog is a great idea!

I would like to hear your comments on the article posted by Cyrus D. Mehta and Associates on "PROPOSALS FOR AGENCY ACTION TO AMELIORATE THE PRIORITY DATES CRISIS" (http://cyrusmehta.com/news.aspx?SubIdx=ocyrus20103925436)

If these proposals are possible within the powers of the USCIS, I believe it would go far to ease the pain of legal immigrants from severely backlogged countries waiting for a visa number to be available. Thank you.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 11:41:00 AM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm most curious on one thing- a couple of years ago, the priority date to file I-485 on EB-3 was 2005 for "All Other Countries". But, now it went back to 2002. How's is that possible?
This sort of inconsistency is a clear sign of USCIS being totally inept in doing its job. If there are not enough resources, then what USCIS should do is- raise the applications' fee and get more resources to work on the pending files. That way, USCIS doesn't have to take the burden of cost, yet the applications would be processed quickly.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 12:06:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is really a sea change attitude for USCIS and we really appauld the USCIS in making the Visa Process Public.Every month we understand the USCIS sends DOS information about the number of eligible applicats and the DOS pushes the dates. Why cant this information be made public. This should be a simple mathematcial process and USCIS seems to have made it extremely complicated like a lottery. All the Data should simply add up and every person should be able to estimate that there are for example 100 visas available and this year we are giving 50 and this is the month status which we are sharing with DOS

 
At March 11, 2010 at 12:11:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

USCIS blogging is good to hear, but will any thing change from it is all together a different thing. We in EB3 are waiting for more than 10 yrs and still waiting. And then suddenly now people comming on L1 and doing EB1. USCIS should look how come there is a sudden increase in EB1. Also lot of people comming from various countries on L1 while earlier they used to come on H1. Is some things are getting misused.????? USCIS should work with DHS to make sure visa's are not waisted and should try to fix the retrogressed dates.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 12:12:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would like to remind USCIS that this country was made by immigrants and it holds such a high status at the global level compared to other countries because of its immigrant friendly nature and respect for human lives and values.

We too are immigrants to this great country and have been in this country for over 10 years now and have applied for our GC's for more than 7 years now. We have been stuck in the "Employment category" backlog. I fail to understand personally how a country like USA with such immense resources of men and material can run backlogs going into decades for processing applications. Why we cannot streamline the process and have a good understanding of where we are and what we can do to make process more transparent and quicker.

We have such high unemployment in this country presently and why would USCIS not employ more people to process these applications and remove any quota restrictions etc that are putting a bottleneck on the processing times. All these educated and talented immigrants who are waiting for decades in line to get their GC's would bring so much to the economy once their GC's are approved. Personally I know quite a significant number of people who are waiting for their GC's to buy houses etc. and we all know how that would stimulate the economy.

My feedback to USCIS can be summarized by the following 3 points

1) More transparent processing and expedited processing
2) Remove all bottlenecks that slowdown the processing including employing more people at USCIS, remove country quotas etc
3) Accountability for USCIS for the work. Do not generate an RFE to slow down the process just because it can be done.


Hope this helps

 
At March 11, 2010 at 12:21:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

It would be helpful if USCIS would come up with a report on how many employment based green cards were given out on a monthly basis every fiscal year. This would give some sort of transparency on visas being used versus visas being wasted.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 12:27:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

My family and I really appreciate the effort in wanting to learn from our "suggestions and constructive criticism".

After waiting 10 years for a Green Card, any information that gives us an idea how long more we should wait in line is very welcome. However, information from USCIS (TSC and NSC quarterly reports) and from DOS (Determination of cutoff dates) doesn't appear to make sense when they are placed together. Of course we understand that we don’t have all the information that leads to the outcome of said reports.

We respectfully request and greatly appreciate a thorough joint effort (DOS and USCIS) to make them clearer.

Thanks again for this Web page.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 12:46:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

First of all we would like to thank USCIS to have established a forum to allow you to listen to public’s expectations. United States of America is one of the best countries to live, and be a permanent resident/citizen of.

We greatly appreciate the strides USCIS is taking to make the Immigration & Naturalization process more efficient and transparent.

Below are few thoughts:

1)The case status displayed does not give much information currently. It would be helpful to know if our I-485 case is pre-adjudicated, and there are no deficiencies (requiring additional documents etc) and the case if only waiting for allotment of VISA number. For many of us who are waiting for years, it will give us peace of mind to know that we will get our green card and the only question is time. Unlike now, we don’t know what our chances are. If we know the likeliness of being a permanent resident it would greatly help us plan our future like seeking higher education, making investments, buying homes etc, which in turn will help boom U.S economy.

2)It would be nice to know the expected wait time for each of our cases (individualized) displayed with the application status (just like when we call customer service the automated message says “the expected wait time to speak to the next customer service representative is 20 minutes”)

 
At March 11, 2010 at 12:57:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The USCIS and Obama are pretending that they are doing sincere effort to reduce the backlog. Can you explain why the EB3-I category is still at June2001. It is sitting there for more than five years. Don't you think how much irritating must be to a person who is legally here paying his taxes and not getting the GC certified.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 1:07:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I guess the keywords are "process transperancy" and "accurate data".

I don't mind hearing, 'based on your priority date and type of application, you'll get your Green Card in about 15 years from now and here's why it would take so much time'. I can atleast plan many things based on this information.

It's the uncertainity that causes a lot of anxiety.

I would also like to take this opppurtunity to thank you for opening up this blog, I guess first of it's kind where we can communicate with USCIS directly. Very much appreciated.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 1:14:00 PM EST , Blogger USCIS Blog Team said...

Thank you all for your comments. We are already looking into the topics you have raised.

As you post your comments, please keep in mind that we have a comments policy and that the inclusion of personal contact or case information will typically prevent us from posting an otherwise acceptable comment. If you notice that your comment has not been accepted for that reason, please re-submit it without personal email addresses, case numbers, phone numbers, etc.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 1:18:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for the Beacon. That is a nice that we can input something and wish it could be heard.

There are many clients got their 485 applications unreasonable rejection/delay since last Dec. And they have not been informed if their applications was received. They are waiting week by week to pray that USCIS cashed checks.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 1:22:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Under 319(b), one of the conditions is that the US citizen spouse must be working for:
"An American firm or corporation engaged in whole or in part in the development of foreign trade and commerce of the U.S"

Here’s my question: how does USCIS define "an American-owned firm or corporation engaged in whole or in part in the development of foreign trade and commerce for the United States"?

Are international relief agencies included in this definition?

How can anyone claim that International non-profit relief agencies are NOT "engaged in (at least) in part in the development of foreign trade and commerce for the United States"—while almost all these agencies purchase tones of relief items from the US; pay millions to US shipping companies to ship these relief goods to the developing world?

 
At March 11, 2010 at 1:50:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I really appreciate the initiative effort USCIS is taking to listen to clients and would appreciate more if it puts th esame ffort in replying back the questions insteadof just having the blog.

My queston is ,what kind of additional review process is done at I-140 stage which makes applications sit for 2 yrs without approvals,without RFE's and without any information available.i believe USCIS should be to certain extent transpernt in its operations in cases like this where employess just wait and wait and wait with no further info.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 1:50:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

How about putting a topic for "Employment based backlogs" and inviting comments

 
At March 11, 2010 at 2:21:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow
What a fantastic opportunity for people to air their issues.

I think personally as it affects a lot of people around me, the Employment Based Backlog is the most intriguing issue and the USCIS should make every possible effort to being transperancy to the process of how visa numbers are issued by chargebility and month.

The USCIS team should be aware that there are a lot of grieving people out there and it is possible that there will be a lot of accusations of ineptitude. Just make sure that this is nothing more than the frustration of people who seek to make their living legally in this country.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 2:23:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why a human being who is free to choose his choice of work and choice of employer be restricted by USCIS once he get into immigration process.

A person who starts the green card process with a position and Employer should remain in that position until the adjustment of status even if it takes 10 years and once he files AOS he should stick to the similar job until it is approved. Is USCIS realistic in establishing this rule? is USCIS underestimating the advance of technology and economy and there by choices of jobs and choice of an individual? Isn’t USCIS indirectly imposing a rule to remain where you are in position hierarchy for years to come? What USCIS is doing with this process is taking away person's freedom of choice to choose his work and place of work.

An Adult would have to put a side number decisions due to uncertainty of his stay in US and the restriction of sticking to the same employer, here are few

1) Career choices
2) Where to invest his money here in US or his Home country,
3) Buy a house, which can take away good $$s if you have to sell it urgently
4) Visiting home country
5) Taking a longer beak from work say 3 months
6) Where to educate his Kids, there is lot of difference between standard of education here in US and Home country. One is better than other.


I may be an IT guy today, but would like to move into management in next 3 years, if I have to follow current law, I need to start a fresh process and delay my AOS further or remain in the current status sacrificing my intent to change job and this goes for years not months. Some countries issue PR based number of years of legal stay.1 0 years of Social Security contribution make once eligible for benefit.Why can’t these be standards for once permanent stay when an applications follows the law and pays all taxes like a citizen.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 2:46:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just one request. Please treat us like human beings and not just another number in your file. We have followed all the rules and regulations of your great country and still are treated so harshly. By we I mean people who are legally in this country and following the immigration process. Personally I am in employment based category.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 2:53:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

This blog is soon going to flood with suggestions and criticism...get ready to categorize the comments so they can be read and understood by interested parties. Else this blog will also become a big ocean of confusion like the USCIS working process.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 3:00:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Appreciate the time the top brass at USCIS is spending to listen to it's clients. My concern is regarding Employment based greencards backlog. I am in US for more than 11 years and started my Greencard processing in 2002. My daughter is meritorious student in a reputed school in St. Louis MO and aspiring to be a doctor. Most of the colleges in the MO state (especially University of Missouri Kansas City) requires permananet resident card to apply for 6 year Medical college. We are losing the opportunity to even apply for that college because of this huge backlog (I am not sure whether I can get my Greencard)by the time she starts applying in 2 years from now.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 3:03:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I FULLY AGREE WITH COMMENTS POSTED BY ANONYMOUS, March 11, 2010 2:23:00 PM EST, WHEREIN S/HE STATES "[I] may be an IT guy today, but would like to move into management in next 3 years, if I have to follow current law, I need to start a fresh process and delay my AOS further or remain in the current status sacrificing my intent to change job and this goes for years not months."

THIS RULE IS DRACONIAN AND IS TANTAMOUNT TO MODERN DAY SLAVERY. THOSE WHO SUPPORT HIS/HER (IT Guy's) STAND MUST WRITE IN HERE...HOPING THAT USCIS IS BEING HONEST IN ITS EFFORT, THIS RULE SHOULD BE REPEALED!

 
At March 11, 2010 at 3:43:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Only difference between EB2 and EB3 jobs are 5 years of experience difference. Shouldn't EB3 applications automatically be considered as EB2 after 5 years of PD?

 
At March 11, 2010 at 3:50:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Does USCIS really expect an educated and a talented person who is in AOS for more than 10 years under Employment category from a back logged country to freeze his job, career, employer, family life, salary , title, life and everything around it for all this time. Is that humanely possible? How can anybody even have such expectations?

The people under AOS are humans having their lives too and they are just not file numbers ….

 
At March 11, 2010 at 4:24:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want to be short and to the point: I would like USCIS be able to accept EAD applications after I-140 approvals, and before applying to I-485s. Seems like my priority date will be current in about 6 years (thanks for sharing the data, by the way) and we can only sustain ourselves in this situation (only one income), for about a year. This means that if my spouse doesn't find a sponsor, he has to leave the country and that is something we don't want, this is breaking our family and my spirit. What a ride! Thanks for listening.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 4:45:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is always a good thing to have customer centric view and i wanted to thank USCIS for putting up this blog. People have already pointed out a lot of things and most of them are correct in their own context.But i try to look at it objectively and figure that it is hard to put entire blame on one agency.
USCIS may have some inefficiencies (as pointed by many people )and can do things differently but a lot of it has to do with number of people applying for services and policies of the government. US senate and congress is full of myopic individuals who can not think beyond next election. Those people create this picture that immigrants are bad for this country and will take away jobs.When US has 12 million illegal immigrants and kids dropping out of high school at a rate where out of every 100 student entering only less than 20 reach college they should encourage educated individuals. Human capital is the best form of capital one country can have but people in Government don't understand this simple concept.
I want to start my own company and i cannot do that here being on EAD/H1B because it is too risky because you never know when you are gonna cross legal boundary and end up as illegal immigrant.
But i just have couple of points that i think USCIS should do more.

1. Do not waste any visa number.

2. Give better status in AOS application. It would be great if entire AOS application can brought online in read only form for applicants to see.
It is especially important for AOS application that pre-adjudicated.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 5:03:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks USCIS for the efforts in trying to introduce transparency in the Immigration process.

We all know that we are in a loooooong waiting process to get the GC and are putting our best years in trying to get our GC's without knowing our fate which is years and years away.

My Question is why can't one file for 485 after 140 is approved, atleast we can get our EAD and start investing in Homes and lead a much stable life rather than continue to live with complete uncertaininy. Our kids are growing and will leave our Homes soon for their college education and will always feel that our Kids never got a chance to live in our own Home (instead of a rented apartment)

Please do help us.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 6:00:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your blog looks very appealing and impressive. I salute to you and your leadership for the job well done.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 8:28:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for providing an excellent avenue for feedback. I hope the feeback is used constructively. In additon, we request some transparency as to how this feedback is going to be used.

Some suggestions:
1. Pre-Adjucating process: let the applicants know if their application is preadjucated. It will help a lot for the individual's planning. Now, how does this process improve the economy
a. People will be willing to make house purchases. It will certainly help the foreclosure ridden housing market.
b. They will be more confident about spending,which will help the local businesses
c. Instead of saving the money, they are more likely to invest thereby creating addtional jobs and improving the econonmy.
2. Having the application preadjucted, the applicant is still likely to file for EAD/AP,etc without disrupting the current revenue flows.
3. Reevaluate the current Employment based category. With the backlogs extending in years, provisions for automatic upgrading EB3 to EB2 or EB2 to EB1 could be provided.
4. Recapture of unused visa numbers for prior years and attempt to avoid any wastage.

We appreciate the effort to make the process better and hope that faster immigration will help us serve this great nation.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 8:34:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I followed all the rules and obtained my GC through employment about 2 years ago. It really saddens me to be treated like someone who doesn't belong when I cross the American border. Some kind of invader who doesn't belong. A simple "Welcome back home Mr./Mrs. GC holder" would be nice to hear. Instead, I am treated like someone who doesn't deserve to have a GC/ or stole it!

It would be also nice to know that the USCIS goes out of its way to help GC holders to keep their GCs. Instead, I read in the Internet about people who got their GC revoked and got deported for all sorts of reasons. It seems like even no reasons is a good reason. It is anguishing to know that the USCIS grants us GCs but really doesn't mean it.

Will all due respect.

 
At March 11, 2010 at 9:24:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

2 way communication is a great step in the right direction.

 
At March 12, 2010 at 2:25:00 AM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

* What issues would you like to see discussed on the Beacon blog and why?

I would like to see updates on what USCIS is doing to mitigate pressing issues dealing with LEGAL immigration. A lot of times, we feel like the USCIS is a big iron curtain that secretly blocks out vital information pertaining to resources dedicated to application processing and our applications.

* What can USCIS do to better serve you and those who use our services; what suggestions and constructive criticism do you have?

As many of commented, there always seems to be a few employees of USCIS that does not live up to it's policy of treating it's customers with dignity. My wife was treated poorly at a recently interview. A gentleman came into the waiting area and yelled into the room demanding everyone to be quiet. Why is this necessary?


* What can USCIS do to better communicate with you?

Be forefront and transparent.

 
At March 12, 2010 at 5:10:00 AM EST , Anonymous Dr. Delaram Hanookai said...

This blog is very intersting.i read it many time thanks for sharing it.

 
At March 12, 2010 at 3:58:00 PM EST , Blogger USCIS Blog Team said...

On March 11, 2010 9:15:00 AM EST , Anonymous said...

"We ask the USCIS to provide more detailed information about the employment-based green card backlog: While we applaud the efforts that the USCIS has made in making the employment-based backlog open to the public, many of us would like to have a better understanding of the actual employment-based green card backlog. We feel that this is extremely important so that we have a better idea of where we stand in line and how many years (or decades) we have ahead of us. With that in mind, we would be extremely grateful if you could provide the public with information about:

1. The next publication date of the USCIS TSC and NSC I-485 quarterly reports. We would like to ensure that the USCIS will be consistent in providing this information to the public."


Answer: USCIS is in the process of finalizing the Employment-based I-485 inventory reports on cases that are pending at USCIS Service Centers and should post the results in the coming weeks.

"2. We also understand that there are employment based AOS cases pending at other locations in the USCIS, such as the District Offices. Could you provide detail on the number of I-485 applications that are pending or outstanding at such offices?"

Answer: USCIS does not have this information available currently but is working on a process to make this information part of the Employment-based I-485 pending inventory that is posted on the USCIS website.

 
At March 12, 2010 at 4:37:00 PM EST , Blogger USCIS Blog Team said...

@ commenters discussing the I-485 employment visa situation:

First thanks for your feedback. We plan to post our quarterly I-485 based inventory statistics soon on the USCIS.gov website in our Green Card section.

Regarding the backlog, here is a little background: In July 2007, USCIS received a large number of Adjustment of Status applications (I-485) based on all categories being current on the July 2007 Visa Bulletin. This significant influx of I-485s filings created a much bigger backlog of employment-based applications, especially third preference, resulting in a regression of the visa priority dates.

USCIS has processd the vast majority of the visa regressed applications we've received, and we are waiting for visa availability for these applications - which is what causes the wait times. Simply put, the demand for these visas far outpaces the supply of visa numbers mandated Congress and authorized by the Immigration and Nationality Act each year.

Here are a couple of examples of backlogs and the numbers behind them:

- Currently there are 140,000 employment-based visa numbers annually, and this has been so since Congress enacted the program. Of this total, third preference gets 28.6%, plus any numbers not required by first and second preferences, not more then 10,000 of which goes to the "Other Workers" category.

- There are approximately 136,000 third preference adjustment of status applications pending at USCIS Service Centers, of which there are approximately 59,000 applications with India as the charge country. Section 202 of the Act prescribes that the per-country limit for preference immigrants is set at 7% of the total annual family-sponsored and employment-based preference limits, i.e., 25,620.

 
At March 12, 2010 at 4:38:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am greatful for what the USCIS are doing for the Haitians living in the United States but we have a lot of people who are coming here either because they have a visa or their child/ren are American who are not elegible for the TPS because they came after the earthquake; Is there anything that USCIS can do for these people?

 
At March 12, 2010 at 5:59:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

100,000s of Immigrants are waiting for their Green Cards since 10 years. And you think what they need is another Blog?
How about fixing the problems in the underlying immigration process!

A blog is very nice but unfortunately useless. A real database and process to ACCURATELY TRACK applications is what we need!
How can you leave people in total uncertainty about their future for 10 years? A BEACON is certainly not the symbol I would use for that!

 
At March 12, 2010 at 6:45:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The EB2-India and ROW is already quite advanced , when you compare the other retrogressed category like EB3-I and EB3 ROW. When the spill over is applied why can't you use the spill over numbers to these much poor categories. That will ease many families and people frustrations, who have been waiting for 10-12 years and who have no hopes for other 10-20 years if the spill over rules continues this way.

Other thing to notice that many of these EB3 people have been waiting for such a long time and there experience or kind of job they are doing might be already qualifying them for EB2 category. Moreover, these people might have applied in EB3 just because of the company policies as in 2001,2002,2003 there was not much difference whether you apply in EB2 or EB3 as the dates were current for all these categories.

Also, I am sure the people who are waiting in EB3-I category now must have waited in labor also , as there was no PERM before 2005. The labor certification could take 3-4 years .This must be real long wait for those EB3 people who waited in labor Cert, and now you tell them to wait for 10 years to get the I 485 approved. This is really not justified. USCIS must first target to approve all the application which were applied before PERM got effective .. that is FEB-2005.


How do you justify a person who applied his GC in Mar 2005 under PERM , got it approved in two months and have already received the GC as he had filled in EB2 category. Now days few companies are using L1-A to get the GC to employees withinin 4 months.

If all is justified in front of your eyes either you have closed your eyes or don't want to realize the frustrations of the people and families who are suffering because of this. You must change the GREEN CARD name to LOTTERY CARD .

 
At March 12, 2010 at 9:52:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

What does everyone else think about the representatives at the National Customer Service Center? I understand they are restricted from certain information, but they really should have access to a greater amount of data to help us. Fortunately, most of them are polite and willing to help the best they can.

 
At March 13, 2010 at 3:22:00 AM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for the forum to share feedback.

Off late it has been noticed that numerous large India based IT off-shoring companies have resorted to filing numerous EB1C petitions on behalf of their employees who work in the capacity of project managers. These employees are not truly multi national executive managers - they don't have hire and fire authority nor do they have executive level role. In the organization hierarchy they are at least 10 levels below the CEO.

Passing off Project Managers as Multinational Executive managers not only amounts to falsifying information to obtain green Card but also deprives genuine applicants as it considerably increases the wait times.

I would like to request USCIS to re-look at the the definition of Multi National Executive and adjudicate the case strictly based on merit.

 
At March 13, 2010 at 9:44:00 AM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

To recapture the unused EB visa numbers from last 10 years, Is a memo enough or a change in law is required?

 
At March 13, 2010 at 9:45:00 AM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

When does the spillover for EB visa happens? Last quarter or it could be any quarter?

 
At March 13, 2010 at 10:31:00 AM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

How is spillover implemented? For example, if there is a very low demand for EB1 and EB2 Philippines, will the visa number spillover to EB3 Philippines?

 
At March 13, 2010 at 11:22:00 AM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi,
Thanks for opening a portal to communicate with the stake holders. I am sure this is going to be very insightful for the hundreds of thousands of immigrants coursing though USCIS services.

I would like some comments on why EB3 visas were wasted last year, especially EB3-I, which did not get almost 19% of their allocated visas (source: http://www.travel.state.gov/pdf/FY09AnnualReport_TableV_2.pdf).

Given the heavy demand in EB3 leading to 5-6 year wait for ROW and around 9+ year wait for EB3-I, it was very disappointing to see visas wasted.

What steps are being taken to prevent a repeat of such wastage?

 
At March 13, 2010 at 2:45:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

This blog provides your clients with an excellent means of communicating with USCIS. Thanks for this service!

As one other poster mentioned, maybe its time to open new posts/categories, so that you can organize the comments, so that it becomes easier to follow.

 
At March 13, 2010 at 5:05:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is there any progress made in 212 A 3 B Terrorism Bar and real ID material support cases ?
the suffering of refugees/Asyless continues thanks for the real ID act 2005.First there was the cap of 10,000 GCs for refugees/Asylees per year then lifted the cap to introduce the real ID act in 2005 , many obtacles in the way of ending the suffering of refugees/asylees with different reasons.
Appreciate this milestone in undrstanding your client problems with immigration.
I hope there will be soon an answer to more than 20,000 cases on hold for no crime committed or concievable reason !!!!!

 
At March 13, 2010 at 8:33:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Do you know that even a Doctor's off hour call answering service for advice costs us around $12 per call ? When rest of the private sector is charging money for everything, how about USCIS offering a paid customer support where we pay a fixed amount per call (say $5-$10 prepaid via online and some type of coupon number quoted during phone call to validate payment) and USCIS allows us a complete status update whatever the immigrant wants to know from his/her case file - is fingerprint cleared; name / background check done; how many exact candidates are there before the caller waiting for visa etc. That way USCIS can generate revenue to expand internal processing efficiencies and immigrant callers will get the feeling that their questions have been addressed satisfactorily for the money they have spent. You can even make the USCIS support responder sensitive to "paying customers" by linking their compensation / bonus to the number of callers they are able to take on and receive a good feedback. Its a win-win for USCIS and immigrants.

 
At March 14, 2010 at 1:30:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Material Support Bar - 212(a)(3)(B)

Thank you for the blog.
There is one BIG issue that nobody is mentioning and which is affecting hundred-thousands of asylum seekers. The Material Support Bar - 212(a)(3)(B).
What is being done in order to fix this? What procedures should people follow in order to inquire about their cases? Those who are told their case is pending because of the Material Support Bar do not know how long it's going to be pending. People at the USCIS offices are not helpful as they do not know themselves - after making an appointment thru InfoPass and waiting in line close to two hours and being told "Sorry, I do not know about your case" really sucks.

 
At March 14, 2010 at 4:02:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would like to thank USCIS and the new Director for taking the effort to finally listen to their clients. In the recent days, USCIS has been releasing reports and numerical data to help the public to understand their position in the waiting line. However, there seems to be some inaccuracy in the data provided, or in other words it's not up to date. A quarterly I-485 AOS pending report, if not a monthly update is imminent.

More details should be provided to help the applicants understand the whole spillover process, because that is the only hope for the overly subscribed categories like EB2/EB3 for India & China. The pending AOS report should indicate the spilled over numbers as well.

When it comes to approving or adjudicating the application, an experienced officer should review the application, rather than some one with a scarce knowledge. Irrelevant RFEs and unwanted hardship to the applicants must be totally stopped moving forward.

We are professionals... we play by the rules, we pay taxes, and we are here in this country legally. We have invested our time and money in this process, and we do need a little respect.

Thank you once again!

 
At March 14, 2010 at 4:39:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

As mentioned in the above posts, the pre-adjudication status of the AOS application should be made public. The case status website should show this information. And like others mentioned, it would be a great relief for people who are waiting in the line for years.

 
At March 14, 2010 at 5:55:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

case status online update should be frequently, online update seems 6 months lately done, my naturalization test done 1 year before but my status showing that now my case is in local office I will be notify for test, thats funny status, if thats so then why necessary of online update .

 
At March 14, 2010 at 6:04:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

What does mean by " under further consideration" as case status? my case went throuh reveiw, aditional reveiw, now under further consideration, I 've talked to local office suppervisor he said because of my last name (muslim) that would take long time, I dont understand why I have to wait for oath 13 months , though I did't do anything which can negatively affect my case, and still uncertain wait---- tahnk you.

 
At March 14, 2010 at 10:26:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for the Beacon.
Read on web that USCIS was considering pre registration of I-485.This was a big ray of hope for EB3I people waiting for GC ,from years.
Is this information correct ?If yes, when we can expect it to happen.

 
At March 15, 2010 at 1:24:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

With immigration reform talks and possible future debates on these issues, I truly am hopeful that we will see some sort of change soon with our immigration system. I have a case where I'm finding it difficult to find justice for certain people within the immigration system. My mother was recently denied her I-485 application but was granted voluntary departure. She must leave her family behind now to have a possible chance for another shot at obtaining a green card in the future. Her case currently has a misrepresentation charge been placed on her from 2000. She tried to enter the US from Vancouver and due to her very limited English skills and there seemed to be a misunderstanding on the immigration officers part and said my mother misrepresented herself as a twin sister. The story is absurd to me and she can never recall saying that to the immigration officer. This caused our family great distress down the road and we can never find a way to get rid of that charge or even dispute it. If I apply for her in the future, there is no I-601 waivers available for son-parent. Therefore her chances are slim to get back into the country. She currently suffers from depression over the idea she must leave everything behind to go back to her country, where she has no ties at all. It just seems that we have nowhere to turn for our issues. I find it hard to even dispute a claim by an immigration officer. Simply whatever he put into the system becomes a permanent statement with absolutely no chance to discredit his charge. Any bright ideas as to what I could do in a case like this?

 
At March 15, 2010 at 6:20:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Outstanding I-485 inventory at USCIS Field Offices

It would be extremely helpful if you could compile the number of I-485s which are pending at the USCIS District Offices. On the I-485 inventory reports FAQs, you stated that there is a "small" population pending at such offices. However, some speculate that there are actually over 100,000 applications at the District Offices.

Whether this speculation is true or not, we understand that during the first four months of the FY 2010, the USCIS District Offices requested 8,400 employment-based visas, while the Service Centers only requested 4,200. This suggests that the field offices have many more pending applications and that this is not a "small" population of cases.

We would really appreciate your prompt attention to this matter.

 
At March 15, 2010 at 11:10:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Effective immediately, Applicants, whose petition is approved and are eligible to receive GREEN CARD but for a Visa Number, should be issued an INTERIM GREEN CARD ("IGC") valid for a period of 3 years, renewable. The benefits provided by IGC should be same as that provided by Green Card, except that it has an initial lifespan of 3 years.

The IGC should replace AP and EAD. This will eliminate impermissible discrimination based on National of Origin, by USCIS.

The United States Constitution and Title VII prohibit employers from discriminating against employees or applicants on the basis of race or nationality. The federal government and states have created agencies that enforce these laws. USCIS seems to be an exception.

 
At March 15, 2010 at 12:47:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I’m sorry to everyone who has posted such frustrating comments. I am not at that point of frustration yet and pray that I don’t reach that level. However, I am feeling some frustration. I am fairly new to the process. With that being said, I am more interested in knowing about the initial process. I have filed two petitions to bring my husband here and the case status only shows the applications were received. Since there is no communication, I check every other day hoping to see some changes in the status. Accordingly, the process time is five months for the type of applications that I filed. What happens then? I have read every section on your web site on how to bring your spouse to the US. The most frustrating part of the process is “not knowing and no communication”. (Which is what a lot of the comments have been stating?) For a person like me who cannot afford an attorney and trying to do this on my own, a little guidance would be much appreciated!

 
At March 15, 2010 at 5:28:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Quoting statistics from http://www.travel.state.gov/visa/frvi/statistics/statistics_1476.html

In FY2008 EB2-India received 14,818 visas, which was 21.1% of the 70,135 EB2 visas issued.
In FY2009 EB2-India received 10,116 visas, which was 22.0% of the 46,034 EB2 visas issued.

In FY2008 EB1-India received 5,327 visas, which was 14.6% of the 36,590 EB1 visas issued.
In FY2009 EB1-India received 6,672 visas, which was 16.3% of the 40,978 EB1 visas issued.

I'm wondering as to how in an economic recession there is a growth in the number of multi-national executives needed to manage business operations in the US. Also how are these companies showing a genuine need for these managers to be in the US through financial records?

I believe that the financial value of the portfolios of these companies have been re-used over several EB1-C applications. For e.g. an engagement manager shows that he is managing 40 million USD worth of business and applies for EB1-C. The project manager, who reports to the engagement manager, shows that he/she is managing 20 million USD in business and applies for permanent residency in the Eb1-C category. But this 20 million is from the 40 million pie. Also an org chart may indicate that the project manager reports to the vice president of the company, but in a large multinational company (e.g. a well known Indian software vendor) there can be as many as 400-500 vice presidents.The cascading effect of this increase in demand in EB1-C can be seen in the lack of movement in EB2 and EB3 priority dates.

USCIS has initiated closer scrutiny of H1-B applications due to fraud, which is commendable. But giving the same perpetrators of fraud permanent residency through the EB1-C program is a sign of double standards. I don't know if a FOIA request or a law suit can challenge the validity of the EB1-C petitions and approvals, but given the current state of affairs it seems to be the only recourse.

 
At March 15, 2010 at 11:02:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm applauding the following comment:

At March 11, 2010 10:09:00 AM EST , Anonymous said...
Given the arrogance, incompetency and almost dictatorial mentality shown by USCIS staff, Regional Directors to Adjudicating Officers (In my personal experience, I had to tell an Adjudicating Officer, presumably at Vermont, that she is talking to a human being and not an animal, please show some courtesy), I wonder if this blog makes any sense. The moral, ethical and professional desire for change should come from within and not from comments posted herein. To begin with Adjudicating Officers should be held accountable for their mistakes (e.g., provision to sue them for issuing irrelevant RFEs or causing undue and unnecessary delays, bringing misery and mental anguish to many) and not hide behind the disguised number, e.g.,xm300. If a communication (of any kind) is mailed to USCIS, it should promptly acknowledge with a letter. For example, we have received your request for XYZ and we are looking into this matter...

Given that no one has posted any comments shows how scared people are to post their comments, probably fearing reprisal from adjudicating officers that they will vent their vengeance on them.

 
At March 16, 2010 at 2:43:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's time to seperate between Overseas visa number and AOS !!!
The AOS applicants are already living in the united states and they working where they are supposed to, and they are helping the US economy .
But what's the deal with people waiting in there own country ain't capable of helping the Us economy with their skills just because all visa numbers are wasted by the USCIS !!!
Don't you think people that you are already living there and you want to improve things, meanwhile others are waiting in bad conditions !!!!
BE wise !

 
At March 16, 2010 at 10:32:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why doesn't the USCIS show the appropritate case status in their website for I-485 applications.
They can show case status for each of the milestones (like FBI Name Check complete, Background Check complete, Pre-Adjudicated & Waiting for Visa, etc..) that are applicable.

Also the USCIS dashboard does not make any sense in some cases. For example take the I-485 applications. All these are filed at the USCIS service center, however, the charts show receipts at local field offices?

 
At March 16, 2010 at 2:53:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

* What can USCIS do to better communicate with you?

Thanks for the Beacon blog.

USCIS can try to give reply , of any 3-4 posts a day...

 
At March 16, 2010 at 5:39:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sure wish you had a list of local offices that assist with filling out forms such as the I-90. I need help filling out form. Anywhere you'd recommend here in the Los Angeles California area?

 
At March 16, 2010 at 7:37:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello I would like to inquire in regards to the Form I-485 specifically the country of chargeability for example a person born in Kenya but carries an Indian passport. In this case, what will be the country of chargeability?

 
At March 16, 2010 at 7:47:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi, thanks for the effort. Given that this is 2010, I'd like to request USCIS provide as many on-line applications as possible. And also, do modifications of the forms which originally were crafted many, many years ago and are often confusing. For example one improvement would be for I-140. I-140 has two categories, self petition and employer petition. Instead of lumping both together a distinction should be made. It can still remain one single form, with two branching out: one for self petition and the other for employer petition. A very simple logical flow chart would accomplish this. For example, the first question should be:

1. Is this a self petition? If yes, then answer question 2 through X. Then Y+1 to Z

2. If it is employer petition, answer Q: X+1 to Y.
Followed by Y+1 to Z.

i.e. Questions Y+1 to Z can be the questions common to both the categories.

This simple step will streamline the process greatly.

 
At March 16, 2010 at 9:47:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is a very frustrating period being in AOS,the long wait, the costs involved, the uneasiness to invest in a home than pay rent, and if you buy a home you don't qualify for Homestead exemptions. To travel overseas yearly with a family it is expensive acquire ADVANCE PAROLE,drivers license have to renewed yearly; when one renews EAD 3 MONTHS prior to expiration the new one does not commence at expiration of the old one but 3 months prior, so instead of 24 months it is valid for 21. Imagine doing this for 10 years plus pending Residency. The process while being in AOS causes a lot of anxiety with the expenses, the pendulum swing of the CUT OFF DATES/PRIORITY DATES etc.

Please have a more fair and humane timeline to acquire PR.

 
At March 16, 2010 at 10:35:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

According to what I read I saw a lot of coincidences about the time we have been waiting to get the Green Card based on Employment. I join all that people and I want to say that I totally agree that you will need to find the way to cut the waiting time. We have paid our taxes, we work to make this Nation what it has been and it is, because we do not have our Green Card we cannot be considered as Residents so, we have to pay more for our kids when they go to the University, we cannot visit our family in our countries because we may not enter again as we do not have anything that shows our status. Please, do all you can to make time shorter. Thank you

 
At March 17, 2010 at 2:33:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The blog should be categorized in different blanch or service center.
If the 800 number is as some people call misrepresentation number, or misinfo, how can people trust this blog? if you call 3time a day with the same question you will get 3 different answers and maybe one is the correct one.
If X case is in Nebraska service why don’t you provide their number directly to that service center, and so forth?
I have no problem USCIS hikes fees, but at least have good customer service; i.e., if there is no problem with a case try to prioritize it.
A example; I-90 if it’s a typo thing, why can’t people go to local office and get fix like how they stamp your passport, it will be less paper work, less load to service center, less hassle, and more efficient.
I will give you credit that you send an update email, and text message on a case.
There are some Immigration forums online; is anyhow USCIS can participate or have something like that; or maybe once a month have open online discussions on most frequent asked questions.
In general, I would like to see USCIS more polite, transparent, takes responsibility, efficient, and have more online filling options (paperwork reduction, save money and trees) people bring originals anyways at the interview!
USCIS NEEDS send documents (Green Cards, EAD card, and other document VIA UPS, or some other reliable ways not first class)
Changing address online or paper based is a joke since USCIS still sends to old address.

 
At March 17, 2010 at 11:57:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am a Chinese citizen. My Perm and I-140 has been approved for 2.5 year.My catalog is EB2. I still can't submit my I-485. Such a pain for me! Is there a way to solve backlog for Chinese?

 
At March 17, 2010 at 12:38:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please clean up the back log mess in the EB3-I.
You people also have a family and children.Our children's future is at stake.

Your whole idea of Green card process is totally incorrect.You are punishing the legal immigrants with the Green card process.

 
At March 17, 2010 at 1:34:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is utterly disappointing and frustrating the way USCIS is handling the visa issuance and availability. Its more than 6 years waiting for permanent residency in rest of world category and USCIS seems to be stuck with the slow process. I cant even change my job as it has to be approved for AC21 and all other complications to be dealt with especially the travel document and also the EAD to be renewed and other headaches. I am even waiting on buying a house till I get my permanent residency approved. What would happen is - I would wait for an other year to see if the GC approves, if no then wont opt for buying a house or additional expense in US, but most likely transfer all savings to homeland and settle there. Cant deal with this anymore. This is not just me but my entire friend circle.

 
At March 17, 2010 at 2:27:00 PM EDT , Blogger USCIS Blog Team said...

@ Anonymous from March 11, 2010 9:15:00 AM EST...

Thank you for the Beacon, its good to know the USCIS is interested in hearing from its clients on an informal level.
On the questions you raised
1.I think that when there is change in filing processes or destinations of applications, we should be updated rapidly on how that is working so we are not in a vacuum of information. For example with the new lock boxes in Phoenix and Dallas , there has not been feedback if your application was sent there after February 25th.
2.If USCIS can rapidly indicate that your application is accepted, that removes room for rumor and speculation and anxiety by many clients.That alone will greatly improve perception of efficiency of the USCIS. Thanks


Changes in USCIS filing processes or destinations are announced to the public through our website. Normally, applications received at the lockbox are receipted within 48 - 72 hours of receipt. USCIS also provides a service that allows applicants to receive email or text messages when their applications have been received at a Lockbox facility. The applicants need to complete and enclose Form G-1145, E-Notification of Application/Petition Acceptance, with their applications to participate in this service.

Be sure to check out our E-Notification Fact Sheet to learn about how you can submit an E-Notification of Application/Petition Acceptance, G-1145 to be notified by email or text message when your application or petition has been accepted at the USCIS Lockbox. Important new forms mailing addresses are also listed on the change in filing location page.

If you have questions about specific filings, you may contact us through lockboxsupport@dhs.gov

 
At March 17, 2010 at 3:13:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for this blog.

After repeated calls and e-mail correpondances, I finally learned that my I-485 application is on hold due to INA 212(A)(3)(B).

I am deeply hurt and saddened by the decission. My kids and I came to USA in 2005 following an approved relative petition to join my husband who is in Asylum since 2002.

Prior to coming to United States, I have been a government employee served for over 16 years. Never been involved in such organizatios or never been a member of any party or group. My husband was a victim who came here to escape insecurities and fear.

I trust in the American Justice and human right system. That is why I left everything and came here to start life again after the age of 40. You allowed us to come and settle here . Why are we denied our immigration benefit now?

Please fix INA 212(A)(3)(B). Please review our case and release our residence permit which is onhold since 2006.

 
At March 17, 2010 at 4:25:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

i am glad that i have the possibility to express my opinion and hopefully being heard.
i live in this country for 10 years now and am currently with a GC,should have had my us citizenship long before but because of backlog and senseless rules from the national immigration services i was held behind.many of my relatives, came 3-4 years after me, and somehow got their GC way before i did, and the funny thing is that the valid date on their GC showed one year before, practically when they were granted asylum, on that date they became GC holders too.does this sound ok? in my case... just because of an address change i didn't get the letter/i missed a fingerprint appointment,all this put me at the end of line for 3 years.
also i would like that uscis provide customers with as much information as possible for people who are waiting to bring their relatives in us.i personally would like for uscis services to be able to provide customers with online chat for any questions we have instead of calling and having to wait at least 30 minutes for a question.
and to make it easier on bringing families together, especially husband or wife, when you fulfill all the conditions why wait in line forever?
thank you
can't wait to become a us citizen
brooklyn,new york

 
At March 17, 2010 at 4:30:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is time to act on INA 212(A)(3)(B). Thousands of people are suffering with out knowing how they fall in this category. Kids are suffering. Spouses are suffering. The waiting is too long and frustrating.
People are losing trust in the Immigration system.

How come aperson who asked USA for protection because of torture and fear in his own country became a security threat? How come kids and spouses who came here to be with their loved ones are treated as criminals? It is not fair at all.

Sir, it is a sad truth. We live in frustration. It is affecting our life and it is going to affect our kids life in the very near future. They grow up here with out any knowledge of what is going on with their destiny.

Please review this INA 212(A)(3)(B) and resolve cases once and for all. It is long overdue.

 
At March 17, 2010 at 4:34:00 PM EDT , Anonymous CharlesN said...

Dear Sir/madam,
Thank you so much for giving us the opportunity to be able to use this blog to draw your attention to some issues which might be of concern to the USCIS and its customers. I have long been waiting for the day this will come when the USCIS will have a blog like this. just like other people have written, it will be good for the USCIS to have a separate page on this site which carried the most up to date forms and their filling fees beside.
Also, it will be good for USCIS to keep in touch either in writing or email when cases on hold are being escalated through the chain of command. I am a good example of this. My cases have been on hold for 3 years. I haven't seen my wife and kids, and this is something very hard to bear. I have been calling the USCIS for the past two years and all I get is, "we are waiting for the secretary of the department of homeland security to place exception authority to your case" So, my case hasn't gotten to the Secretary of DHS yet.
Secondly, the national security of United State is key concern to everyone. but having a list of unjustified organizations as part of terrorist organization is hurting a lot of us who do not belong to a terrorist group nor have ever performed or even have the mind to do anything to hurt someone. My concern here is to have the secretary of DHS look into the cases of people who belong to the Southern Cameroons National Council(SCNC)which has been classified as a terrorist group which is not one.
From my perspective, terrorist do not go to court, they do not take their problem before the African Union, or United Nations. The SCNC has never been engaged in anything related to terrorist. We continue to write letters to international bodies such as the United nations, OAU, UNPO and human right groups to help resolve the issues diplomatically. The SCNC has never been a threat to the National Security of the United States. On what grounds is the SCNC classified as a terrorist group.
This has separated families for so long, and so the earlier the secretary of DHS make this exercises her exemption authority over these cases the better for families to re-unite and be one again.
Thank you

 
At March 17, 2010 at 5:00:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

US Immigration Agencies have done a very bad job for years, wasting 100,000s of VISAs, slow and unreliable processing of applications that your very customers are paying for, with extremly negative results for every legal and lawabiding person stuck in this process.
In a free enterprise corporation, the whole department would have been closed and a lot of people fired, before starting again from ground up.

USCIS needs to consider the Endelman & Mehta proposal, to fix the results of their own gross missmanagement that was going on for years.

http://cyrusmehta.com/news.aspx?SubIdx=ocyrus20103925436

 
At March 17, 2010 at 5:43:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

We are happy and appreciate the positive direction that USCIS is taking. There has been a vast increase in the fees but not the same degree of improvement in service or time-line. Given the increase in fees, one would expect that more people will be employed to handle the backlogs. Are all the money obtained from the fees going towards providing service for the applicants who are paying, or some of the funds are being siphoned off somewhere else which has no connection what-so-ever with the applicants?

On the form modification issue an improvement on on-line filling out would be automated responses. Also, for example regarding the I-140, if it is for self petition the system can just generate the questions pertaining to self petition. Similarly, if it is a petition by an employer then the questions pertaining to that category should come up. Which questions should come up would depend on the answer of the first question: Click on-- Self petition/employer petition?

Keep up the good work! Thank you and God Bless!!

 
At March 17, 2010 at 9:11:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Barbara said...

IM SO GLAD TO BE GIVEN THE OPPORTUNITY to express our thoughts and opinions about the USCIS. And i would actually like to share a thought. I came to the US when i was 9 years old , my dad has filed a 245I-form in the year of 2000. 9 years after we finally received our employment authorization, but our case has been denied due to lack of evidence that we were here in 2000. Now i can hardly speak my native language, neither read or write. I have spent more time of my life in the US, then My native country. I consider this nation my home, and after so many years trying to be legalized so i can finally go to college the only choice im left with is to leave. I have tried all my life to be the top student and i have achieved, i have lost chances of getting a scholarship due to my immigration status. after my father was denied the right to have a greencard, he is heading back to his country. Im now over 18 and im asking for help. Is there any law that gives me the right to stay in the US and go to school. I wasnt brought here by choice, but by the need to survive, due to the bad economy in my country at the time.I learned to love this country (my country by heart) and what can be done, for me to stay here?

 
At March 18, 2010 at 4:33:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

How USCIS can ignore the fact of delay cases I-130 petition
This filed by U. Citizen for his foreign national wife almost two years age with VSC.
And still in initial reviews statue.
The normal processing time for this case is 5 months.
They just taking their time and not to worry about people feeling and frustration
Over this issue.
Every time I call about my case, was told wait 6 months and if did not received
A note from us, contact this office again, which I have done that 4 times so far
And was the told same thing over and over again, waiting 6 months.
I have been married my wife 4 years ago and both of us do not know how long more we have to go trough this situation.
Hope some thing change and some one care enough to bring family toghather quicker.
Right now me and my wife are 10000 mils away and been waiting for two years to USCIS determine what we should do.
Our life is upside down. Emotionally and financially tired and hopeless.

 
At March 18, 2010 at 10:43:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am eb3 rest of the world class i-485 filer with 2006 priority date. Few years ago current dates were extremely close to my priority date. Now for couple of years its back to 2002. This is very very frustrating. I can't understand why eb3 rest of the world be this much backlogged. What changed recently in the policy? Putting a particular group backlogged for no significant reason affects adversely for both uscis and the individuals. I hope there is a light....

 
At March 18, 2010 at 11:07:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for asking what issues would you like to see discussed in this blog?

No issue is bigger than INA 212(A)(3)(B) Tha material support bar which makes hundred thousands of refugees/Asylees to suffer.

Why do you penalize us in the name of Terrorist? We are not terrorists. We came here legally and we live here following all rules and regulations of this country.

The weiting is too long, depressive and very frustrating. Please don't put our life in jeopardy. We are hard working , law-abiding citizens who came here trusting the American Justice.

Please act on the Material support bar. INA 212(a)(3)(b).

 
At March 18, 2010 at 11:14:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Raj said...

First of all I want to thank USCIS for taking positive attitude and listening to people.

As I realize that USCIS hands are tied with law and working with other departments like DOS, there are few things that USCIS can definitely do. For each suggestion, I will put the impacted category of suggestion like human, USCIS financial, Job market, Backlog reduction etc.

Suggestion 1: As I suggested in other blog, USCIS should start premium processing of visa number.
a. Premium process should be available only for people whose application is pending for 2+ years.
b. Premium process should be charged $10,000 for people waiting for less than 5 years and $5000 for people waiting for more than 5 years.
c. Premium process should not be limited country retrogression.

Category: Human & USCIS financial


Suggestion 2: Future employment view should start from date 485 is filed and not when GC is started. In other words - employee's intend to work for employer and job restriction should be limited to first 1 year of filing 485. As USCIS will also agree that the only reason, person is not getting green card is due to visa number unavailability.

People can move to different job, take promotion, start business or could do anything after 1 year of employment with intended employer.

Category: Job Market, Personal liberty


3. Case should be process strictly in order of retrieval of application irrespective of applicant's country is retrogressed or not. Plus there should be a status added - "Case approved & waiting for visa number".

This is very important so that people will get RFE in first few months of filing 485 rather than getting RFE after 5 years of filing 485. Case can be marked as approved and waiting for visa number. Case should be marked only as approved if intent to work for employer is satisfied with other aspects.



Worth thinking...

 
At March 18, 2010 at 1:23:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would like to make a comment to Raj (previous post).

I strongly disagree with you about premium processing fee. To me premium processing fee equals corruption; premium processing is a word or expression people use to decorate or sugar coat corruption, like saying if you give me more money on the side of actual fee I will do you a favor.
Premium processing fee BAD IDEA; let's end corruption.

Everybody should be treated fairly the same Zero preference.

One of the ways to reduce the backlog in Visa is to halt the processing for about 1-2years and try to catch up with the people who are already in line.

 
At March 18, 2010 at 1:52:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

there is nothing that would bar the USCIS from allowing the beneficiary of an approved I-140 or I-130 petition, and derivative family members, to obtain an employment authorization document (EAD) and parole. The Executive, under INA § 212(d)(5), has the authority to grant parole for urgent humanitarian reasons or significant public benefits. The crisis in the priority dates where beneficiaries of petitions may need to wait for green cards in excess of 30 years may qualify for invoking § 212(d)(5) under “urgent humanitarian reasons or significant public benefits.” Similarly, the Executive has the authority to grant EAD under INA §274A(h)(3), which defines the term “unauthorized alien” as one who is not “(A) an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence, or (B) authorized to be so employed by this Act or by the Attorney General” (emphasis added). Under sub paragraph (B), the USCIS may grant an EAD to people who are adversely impacted by the tyranny of priority dates. Likewise, the beneficiary of an I-130 or I-140 petition who is outside the U.S. can also be paroled into the U.S. before the priority date becomes current. The principal and the applicable derivatives would enjoy permission to work and travel regardless of whether they remained in nonimmigrant visa status. Even those who are undocumented or out of status, but are beneficiaries of approved I-130 and I-140 petitions, can be granted employment authorization and parole. The retroactive grant of parole may also alleviate those who are subject to the three or ten year bars since INA § 212(a)(9)(B)(ii) defines “unlawful presence” as someone who is here “without being admitted or paroled.” Parole, therefore, eliminates the accrual of unlawful presence.

Please comment on the above suggestion.

 
At March 18, 2010 at 2:11:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Raj said...

There is a premium processing on everything.

H1 premium processing
I-140 premium processing
Jails in some states, facilities are decided based on how much you pay to buy them.

Go to disneyland / 6-flags. They have fast pass. (kidding).

Yes, we can talk about theory for years. I was thinking about practical solution. USCIS also needs money for their operation. This was a win-win solution.

I am cancelling my India trip for last 2 years as we don't know what will USCIS policy when we will come back on Newark airport. For person like me, getting out of this torture house is worth paying anything. If you call it corruption, so be it.

 
At March 18, 2010 at 3:11:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is Uscis gonna do anything about eb3.

 
At March 18, 2010 at 3:47:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I.To reduce backlogs..And to keep the actual demand for visa numbers

1. Just count only Primary applicant as a Unit for one visa.

2. Don't count dependents for visa which is taking so many GCs from quota, Rather relate dependents to Primary with numbering pattern

example: Primary A number 1234567890

Dependent1 A number :1234567891
Dependent2 A number :1234567892
Dependent3 A number :1234567893 ..so on..

3. Remove and cleanup redundant or duplicate safety filings if the primary has already waiting for visa. A person should either be a primary or dependent..no redundant filings should be allowed by dependents as dependents can work,study on EAD legally.

4. Keep only one filing(whatever EB category) opted by primary in case of multiple safety filings or Change of EB category by same primary applicant or auto cancellation of recent filings by same primary to keep old PD if not opted/responded with in time period.

5. If dependent becomes primary on his/her own EB filings, Then, Previous/initial primary should become as dependent automatically to keep demand on visa numbers unchanged.

6. Auto qualification for higher EB category if beneficiary gained qualifications during waiting time for 485 approval.

I think, This is the way to do and get backlog mess cleaned up and re-use available visa numbers..

These methods do not hurt people,Also moves them fast..

II. Let people lead life and study..

USCIS should let AOS beneficiaries to go to fulltime school if wanted to pursue higher studies or research etc.to qualify for even higher EB categories.

This helps people do better in their lives for better future, helps economy too

III. On exact status

USCIS should display exact status of the beneficiary case, not just a categorized.

IV. Travel and Work authorization.

Would be nice to have AP and EAD mixed together for travel and work authorization during AOS with out yearly AP renewals. So that beneficiary would have to renew for every 2 years both at a time.

 
At March 18, 2010 at 5:37:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Another way to reduce the backlog, USCIS need a stimulus package to hire more workforce.
Or USCIS can use some of the Job BILL Obama sign today (they even will get credit for hiring)
If USCIS hires people is good for the economy and puts people to work, even if it temporaly, this will reduce the unemployment rate. It will be a win win win.

 
At March 18, 2010 at 6:33:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a beneficiary, It is my dream to become a US citizen eventually.

Since too much backlog and no legislative relief yet, many beneficiaries are waiting for EB GC approvals for so unknown time period in their productive life time in US while Contributing a lot to US economy and systems in many ways, All we are deserved for a citizenship award over time.

How nice if USCIS can consider beneficiary living time in US towards an Auto eligibility for citizenship for those entered into US on H1 from the date of First entry?

1. Set 10 full status years of time for Auto citizenship, counting from first entry date on H1 into US. Maintaining status for One full year on H1 = 1 full status year = 4 status credit points.

2. Beneficiary must have filed an approvable EB 485 and pending for more than One year at least due to visa unavailability.

3. Considering non-immigration status maintained years from very First entry date into US and time waiting under AOS towards an auto accrual eligibility for citizenship,

4. Beneficiary should have completed 6 years of stay in US at least and paying taxes to become auto eligible.

5. Once accrual clock started
5.1 Considering status years from maintaining status on H1 OR status credit points gained from social work or by charity/donations.
5.2 If can't gain status credit points through social work/charity or if can't wait to complete required status years through an appropriate visa or AOS waiting Then buy 4 status credit points by paying fine $10,000/status year/4 points to qualify for citizenship.

6. Granting status credit points if beneficiary
6.1 Participated in social work or or helping teaching an American Students at no pay (500 hours = 1 status credit point = 3 months of immigration status) with no pay.
6.2 Helped an American citizens/organizations through charity etc ($5,000 charity = 1 status credit point = 3 months of immigration status).
6.3 If done masters or PhD etc from US school in the past or during H1 or AOS (1 semester completed = 1 status credit point = 3 months of immigration status).
7.4 Consider any status credit points gained before auto eligibility clock started provided proof of social work or valid charity.

8. Granting an auto eligibility for citizenship If beneficiary completed/attained 10 full status years = 40 status credit points, paying taxes, No criminal history, No security concerns.

OR

Nice if USCIS consider so much GC waiting time towards citizenship at least in some other alternative better ways to award many hard working people.

 
At March 18, 2010 at 9:31:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want to thank USCIS for granting us the opportunity to blog and to share our comments with the agency. Hopefully, this may be a meaningful vehicle by which we can share constructive feedback in an effort to promote understanding, accountibility and more effective customer service.

That said, this is my first blog. I have a several omments about the process of filing I 130 petitions. We were granted Notice of Action 1 posting a Jan 7th date and we've been awaiting NOA2 since then. Our NOA1 advises that the process is such that files sent in to USCIS will be process before ours etc.

I appreciate that USCIS has many petitions to address and adjudicate. I'm wondering how it is that so many other petitions were approved despite them filing shortly or many weeks AFTER our petition? There seems to be little consistency.

Whatsmore is the lack of effective customer service. Calls to USCIS are met with a standard and very scripted answer that serves the need of the staff member and does nothing to answer specific questions by the petitioner. The outcome is being given the same information one already knows via the website ie initial review. If those assigned duty on the telephones can't provide better services, they should not be answering the phone and a recorded message should be put in place. Although I guess that means loss of jobs and another problem.

As well, one can email USCIS to follow up and the website advises that it could take up to 21 days for a reply or longer !!

The problem is a lack of decent communication with anyone that is looking into the file etc. Our lives are on hold while we go through this process. We don't get to see our wives or husbands readily and have to wait out these process times. Our life line is the communication we receive and in knowing that our case is progressing.

At this stage I have no idea if there is a problem, if the petition has been forgot or lost...nothing. And I can't get any satisfactory information to check the process.

This is really unacceptable in my view. There must be a better way of being able to track information and have a human being or some electronic entity give you more than a static answer ie initial review.

We just want to follow proper immigration laws and begin our new lives with the people love and married. Getting some knowledgeable person interested in the case and helping would go a long way and clearly needs to replace this complete lack of assistance.

Please help.

Thank you.

 
At March 18, 2010 at 9:51:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks you so much for listening to us,

I am from India EB3(Employment based) category with priority date Nov, 2002.Most of my friends who applied green card with same priority date are US Citizens now. It is so stressful and frustrating; can we see the light some time soon? Please...

 
At March 18, 2010 at 10:50:00 PM EDT , Blogger qingshang said...

Nice to see the blog~

The USCIS has spent more than two years on my case and still did not give us a result. We applied for the green card legally but it just takes too long. Now my daughter has to go to college and she got trouble because she hasn't get the green card yet. I hope that you can answer us as soon as posible!

Again~Thanks for reading my comments! O(∩_∩)O~

 
At March 19, 2010 at 6:50:00 AM EDT , Anonymous PAkinniyi said...

Come on people. Everyone is upset because your lives are hanging in the balance because you have not been issued a green card, you can not change jobs because of your current status, USCIS is making your lives so miserable. Stop and think for a moment what your lives would be like if you were not granted the right to come to the LoF? I rather see this blog go away and allocate the resources to processing the backlog than being wasted on filtering a ton of gripes. USCIS would do better to help one understand the day to day grind of the operation and what really goes on behind closed doors. then perhaps we would be a little more understanding. You are here and not against your will. The same door that allowed you to come in, is still open for your to leave if your current situation is that bad. USCIS, it would seem more resources and man power would solve your back log issues and I hope that is what is being considered. For all the folks who knows that Congress has tied the USCIS' hands, get out your paper and pencil and send them these comments to air your frustrations sice they are the ones making and governing the laws. This comment is not geared toward the person who has been waiting 4 years for his wife migrate using the I130 process, that should NOT be happening. i have only been waiting a few months and pray that it does not turn into years for my husband to migrate.

 
At March 19, 2010 at 10:19:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

EB3 Category is UNFAIR: treat EB3 with 5+ years pending EQUAL to EB2

 
At March 19, 2010 at 10:38:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

First of all let me thank USCIS for creating a blog like this.
I have a suggestion that would benefit a number of people like me who got married after filing for our I-485 application. Because I got married after filing i-485 my wife is not included in the application and because of this she has to be on H4 Visa status. In order for her to be on H4 visa status I have to maintain my H1B status (from last 7 years with the same company with no promotion). Because of this I cannot utilize the work authorization document neither can I use the AC21 option to further my career.
It is therefore requested that USCIS comes out with some way that my wife can be included in my application so that she can obtain a work authorization document and I will have the flexibility to use the AC21 provision to get a better job and not be tied to my current employer like a highly educated slave.

 
At March 19, 2010 at 11:12:00 AM EDT , Anonymous BK said...

USCIS - If you want to get your customers view, here are few recommendations. Please consider.

RECOMMENDATION TO REDUCE BLOCKAGE:

+) Count only the principal beneficiaries of I-140 petitions and not family members under the employment

+) Recapture all the unused visa's

+) Remove country limit quota - Is there any hidden motive in keeping country quota ?

OTHER RECOMMENDATION:

Please allow the beneficiary of an approved I-140, and derivative family members, to obtain an employment authorization document (EAD) and advance parole.

 
At March 19, 2010 at 12:37:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

What about the Application Service Center helping file the correct forms?, I'm a citizen trying to get a green card for my sister and I can't get enough information, I still have my doubts about some forms and if you call 1-800-375-5283 you will only get a recording, I can't a representative to ask question or I can't get and appoiment at the Application Service Center because the case hasn't been file, I just want to do the right thing sending the correct forms

 
At March 19, 2010 at 1:41:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

All the green card applicants need to accept that nothing will change. This blog is only for show. They can report anything they want but USCIS processing will still carry on as usual.
I think the blog comments are useful only for venting out pent up frustrations by weary green card applicants. There is _no_ conversation happening on this blog. The people maintaining this blog and Mr. Mayorkas don't have any _real_ power (or incentive) to change USCIS policies and processes.
C'mon people, think about it. If the people who had the power to change the USCIS policies and processes really cared, and I mean _really cared_, wouldn't you think that something would have been done by now?

 
At March 19, 2010 at 3:39:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree, enough of cosmetic face lift. We need real change. Change in action, not words. Lot of lives are in jeopardy, even though they came here legally and are productive and contributing members of the society. The American door was opened to them with promises of better lives. Keeping them in limbo [while taking their services and taxes!] is NOT RIGHT. Towards that, we need to send a msg. to Congress and USCIS:

Please allocate the funds generated from the application fees by the applicants to USCIS only and NOT to any other agency.

Streamline the process and get rid of the archaic system. As we all know this is 2010 and we are exploring space. And this IS America. The beacon of light for the rest of the world. How can we claim it to be so, while keeping a large section of law abiding, intelligent and hardworking people waiting in line with umpteen no. of uncertainties?

Excellent suggestion yesterday, about instantly granting EAD along with application [I thought this was already in practice, but apparently not]. This will be a win-win situation for both USCIS [increased revenue from the EAD application fees] and the applicant.

Another great suggestion was to allocate one visa number to the principle applicant and not the derivatives.

I am thoroughly disappointed by Raj's solution about 5K/10K premium processing to get ahead in line. This will benefit only the well-off and will promote corruption in the system. Apparently Raj has lots of money. Why not invest in rural areas or high unemployment areas? It will grant you a quick GC and also will be good for the economy and benefit your fellow country men. We need and appreciate all the talents and hard work of people coming here to better their lives, but please don't bring the corrupt practices of other countries. Lord knows we already have enough of our own which we need to reduce [and not increase].

Thank you!

 
At March 19, 2010 at 4:26:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Stop the Diversity VISA Lottery Program and make the 50,000 visas available to those who have been waiting in line for years!

 
At March 19, 2010 at 4:39:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can the USCIS blog team comment on April's visa bulletin? The previously released demand data does not seem to match the bulletin's movement. The question in the minds of all the people in AOS remains "When if ever will my green card application be processed?"

Thanks

 
At March 19, 2010 at 5:17:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great Web site, but I don believe a piece of what USCIS said, tooo many years of frustration, toooo many years waiting for a Green Card!.
USCIS absolutely don't care none of us. NONE.
We are for them just a receipt number.

 
At March 19, 2010 at 5:42:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks USCIS for giving this opportunity to send our comments through this blog.

I have to say this that this type of messaging makes me think about the movie "Bruce Almighty" where peoples prayers are sent through email to God. Looks similar to that.

There will be tons of information from people who are waiting for their number to get the green card and I hope USCIS will use the information pool in a positive way and help the needy.

That being said, I myself (EB3 - PD Oct 2003) am waiting for about 6 1/2 years now and still don't see any significant movement in the priority dates and thus unable to plan anything in life. Not able to move up career wise, not just myself but my wife too. Not able to invest with the fear of getting denied from USCIS for God knows what reason. Because of the fear of getting rejected a persons mind always thinks many times before making any plans and this thinking affects the way of life of both the individual and inturn affects everyone in the family.

Like myself, there are lots of people who are undergoing the same pain and it has become part of our lives. We came to this land to pursue our dream and we came legally here, paid our taxes, obeyed the rules etc., and still we are stuck in this immigration web. It is impossible to carry on with our lives without knowing when actually we will be getting our freedom.

USCIS should consider pre-approving (lighter green card) the long waiting (say 5 Yrs) applicants, giving them hope (in written statement) that their application would not be denied for any reason until the final green card is issued. If this is done, you can see tons of people pouring money into the system by making all sorts of investments, a major one being the housing market. I myself know a number of people hesistant to invest into anything because of pending application. Think about it.

Thanks again for this blog. Everyone would be much happier if USCIS actually composes these messages and turn these into reality.

 
At March 19, 2010 at 8:14:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would like to thank the USCIS for setting up this sort of forum for people to share. I have dealt with the USCIS since the days when they were known as INS and I have to say they have come a long way. They have demonstrated their ability to adapt to new technology and have introduced multiple ways to communicate to applicants about the status of their cases- text, email, letters, phone etc. I have the highest regard for what they have done and continue to do and I have nothing but positive things to say about them. They have expedited their services and while I understand the frustrations of some people, I think we ought to give credit where credit is due. We are indeed lucky as immigrants to be given the opportunity to vent anger, frustration without it affecting our case negatively and without fear of reprisal. We may not realise it but a lot of us have been given the opportunity to indeed live the American dream. Where else in the world can one do this? Not even Europe, where you have to jump through hoops just to get residency. Thank You USCIS for a job well done.

 
At March 20, 2010 at 10:51:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

We are attempting to adopt a Haitian orphan and are hearing many rumors, one being that Haiti will not allow any children to leave Haiti for two years -- this came from a politician's office. Is this true? I find it difficult to believe that Haiti would want to stop a legitimate adoption of a child who was legally adoptable before the earthquake. Do you have any encouragement on this issue?
Faith from Oklahoma City

 
At March 20, 2010 at 10:09:00 PM EDT , Anonymous B said...

To USCIS Director & Team -

Are you serious in getting feedback from your customers, identify their pain areas and improve the USCIS process? By this time you might have got plenty of message.

Employment in this country is offered purely based on individual skills and 100% based on merit only. There is no quota to get job based on color or race or religion or ethnic background. Then, why does USCIS follow country limit on employment based green card? Is this to put control on brilliance, creativity and hard-work of specific group of people? Sorry to say, but this country quota sounds like similar to very old legislation 'Chinese Exclusion Act' but adopted in 21st century?

USA needs mixed ethnic background people, agree, but you have lottery program to bring mixed ethnic background to this country, then why do you need to control employment based green card based on applicant's country origin?

If you are honestly looking for better improvements to your customers, request you to consider allowing approved 140 applicants to file 485 (AOS) so that they can get their EAD and AP. Then, please consider only primary applicant towards the visa number count. And finally please remove country quota.

 
At March 20, 2010 at 10:57:00 PM EDT , Anonymous B said...

In addition to my previous comment, I have few more to add.

You might have changed the USCIS website to portal and have blogs to write the happening inside USCIS. But, this kind of change is just cosmetic change to us. The real change we are expecting is to fix your broken process and rules to meet the employment green card demands. The basic principle is, "Technology will never help to fix broken USCIS business process".

So, please consider to meet the demands of employment green card for Indians and Chinese nationals.

Thank you very much.

 
At March 21, 2010 at 7:09:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Ron Pavilon said...

Why does US government is so strict on giving VISA on Filipino people? But Philippine government is not so strict on Americans? Isn't it unfair for the PINOY's?

 
At March 21, 2010 at 8:09:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

why waiting for over a year for procesing I-130 petition on behalf of US Citizen wife with VSC.
can you help to end this frustration with USCIS.

 
At March 21, 2010 at 9:22:00 PM EDT , Blogger bornloyal said...

I am a US Citizen and had file I-130 IMMIGRANT PETITION on behalf of my wife on December 10, 2008
With VSC, and has been on Initial Review all this time.
By calling USCIS customer service center, did not get any where, and they keep telling me the case is on background check.
the frustration for me and my wife who is waiting in another country to joint me is behind imagination, and would to know what can I do?
I had contact my congress and senator and the respond they had from USCIS was the same (background check).
would you please help me, or inform me of my options?
I thought we are at a country which humanity and family unification is important, but obusly that is not the case with the USCIS

 
At March 21, 2010 at 10:49:00 PM EDT , Blogger Balaji said...

The reason for July 2007 inflow of applications is this.

in my opinion USCIS/DOL first should have removed the concept of pre-approved labor. Since this was not done, anybody who never thought of filing labor , has decided to file 485, by using the pre-approved labor. This gave them comfortable priority date and EAD.

Presently we understand that there is no pre-approved labor. Likewise my suggestions to USCIS is this.

1. Removal of concurent filing. Guess this is already in proposal.

2. Make all I-140 approved candidates, who has completed their 6 (or specifc number of years) years of stay in US, should be allowed to file I-485. Decision to give EAD or not to give is your choice. Atleast allow them to change employers on the original skill set, so that they can be free from same employers.

The above two suggestions will definitely reduce the number of incoming applications and giving meaninful path to people who are in wait line.

 
At March 22, 2010 at 2:51:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am legally present in US for past 13 years, paid tax, obeyed all rules by the country, never even got a speeding ticket.I also done my advanced degree here in US, but still I don't have a green card because of the delay in processing. The sad part is people who are illegal has loop holes to get green card and it is known fact that they could get that in few years. What is the value of honesty?

USCIS should consider the time an individual who stayed legally in US, their history, education and then allow temperory card espesially after I140 approval, this will help many individuals and families.

Thanks,

 
At March 22, 2010 at 7:11:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Agree, but what difference it's going to make when there is no real date movements. It doesn't matter whether you are EB2 or EB3, you are still stuck in the process.

""At March 11, 2010 3:43:00 PM EST , Anonymous said...

Only difference between EB2 and EB3 jobs are 5 years of experience difference. Shouldn't EB3 applications automatically be considered as EB2 after 5 years of PD?""

 
At March 22, 2010 at 8:21:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please do not penalize people who are legally here by prolonging the process and adding to all the uncertainties and stress. Please adopt a point system. For example, each year a person is in the country [legally!] one point, advanced degree 5 points, US citizen relative [preference category] 5 points... etc. And then if someone has 10 points, allow them to apply for Green card. Grant them EAD while the GC is being processed. Would you please adopt a streamlined process like this? It will benefit many talented and hardworking law abiding folks and their families.

 
At March 23, 2010 at 9:00:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

To USCIS:
Thanks for letting all immigrants come on here and express their feelings and frustration without worrying about you guys showing up at their doors for a raid like you like to do.
Honestly I believe that USCIS really plays with immigrants lives.Think about it,so many people waiting for years to have a green card without knowing when that might happen meanwhile, everything in America including income tax is processed fast.
My point is USCIS is not truthful.Why ? consider this: they posted on their website that the processing time for a form I-751 (application to remove conditions on a green card) is 6 months and I know 5 people who waited 2 years to receive their 10 year green card.So far USCIS has not been able to prove to anybody that they can get the job done and meet the expectation of the public by beating those fake processing times posted on their website.

1-why don't you guys be honest and post accurate information on your website?
2-The reality is, it costs thousands of dollars to go through the whole immigration process and finally settle in America, Why can't you hire some of these jobless college graduates to work for the USCIS and help with the work load?
3- what is the myth behind that I-751?why does it take so long while some get through faster? Does the wait period depend on whether a person is married to a US citizen or married to a US resident. Is there any preferences involved?

 
At March 23, 2010 at 10:59:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

What is the point of having a customer service or going for an InfoPass when we get no answer about our submitted documentation? For some applications time is crucial and the cranky USCIS employees cannot understand that waiting for 30 days to get an answer is just unacceptable. If the post office shows that the documentation has reached the USCIS PO box then USCIS show send a barcode ticket of our papers right away so at least we don't keep wasting our time.

 
At March 23, 2010 at 11:42:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Raj said...

I don't want to get into debate whether premium process of I-485 is ethical or not. I see the things in practical way. Here are my reasons:

1. I have seen people with just 4-5 years total experience could filed under EB1 and get their entire GC process done in 4-5 months where all I could do is to curse myself staying loyal to job and employer and waiting under EB3. EB1 in this regard is INDIRECT PREMIUM PROCESS BY EMPLOYER. Its just you can't see it.

2. USCIS keeps fluctuating dates back and forth like bumpy ride for years. Quite a few lucky people got their GC when this got into their favor in last few years. For example, one of my friend with EB2 India got his GC approved when July 2007 everything became current. People are waiting with PD before that. This is PREMIUM PROCESS BY LUCK.

3. Quite a few people got their GC by having substitute approved labor. Got their green card in couple of years. This is PREMIUM PROCESS BY EMPLOYER'S PERSONAL FAVOR.

4. USCIS does give spilled over number to certain categories. Unfortunately spill over priority is given to 2005 & 2006 EB2 people where as 2001 EB3 are rotting in hell.

Besides of buying house and other implications, there are 2 major major impacts due to this prolonged GC process:

1. People filed their green card when kids where in elementary school. Unfortunately during this GC process especially for EB3 India, those kids are in phase of going to colleges. Some states don't consider AOS status people as resident even though the person lived there for 10+ years. People have to pay much higher amount for their tuition fees. Think if you are in this situation and can get your GC premium processed by paying $5K or $10K - still cheaper.

2. Second biggest issue of stretched GC process affects people like me. Issue is that you are allowed to file to become citizen only after 5 years of getting GC. As per current understanding, this time clock starts when your 485 is approved and not when 485 is filed. Now only after becoming citizen you can file GC for your parent. In my case, my father passed away and I don't have siblings. As per Indian culture, we want our mother live with us especially when she is alone. Think if you could pay $10K and start your clock so that after 5 years your family is "complete".

Yes, you can criticize because something doesn't sound ethical but I remember a famous sentence:

In theory, theory and practice is same but in practice they are not.

 
At March 23, 2010 at 12:03:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for the blog. It's a great idea

My questions concern the the notice to close I-129F for a K3 visa. And, Is there still a K3?

When a U.S. citizen is hoping to have a loved one enter the United States on a K3 visa, they will file the I-130 and as soon as they receive the receipt notice, will file the I-129F. With the new change, if (NVC) approves the I-129F first and forwards to the overseas Consulate, will they still process the I-130 and close the I-129F?

If (NVC) closes an I-129F after the U.S. Consulate mails the information packet to a foreign spouse, will they request a new I-864 Affidavit of Support to replace the I-134?

Is a K3 still possible?

 
At March 23, 2010 at 2:02:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The lockbox appears to be negating the intentions of the USCIS as applications received in the last 3-4 weeks are not even acknowledged as received in spite of filling form G1145. Folks who applied to Vermont Service Center in the 2nd week of March already have EAD approvals and those of us who filed to the Phoenix lockbox have waited for more than 3weeks without even a notice of acceptance. How is this fair in the land of the free?What is the USCIS doing to relieve the frustrations of its clients in this regard? People's jobs are on the line and though we know the applications are with them not having a decision is very frustrating. Thank you for your attention to this

 
At March 23, 2010 at 2:02:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I came here legally to work as a nurse. I was given a work permit, a social security number and a driver's license. My work permit was renewed for another two years after working for 1 year. Then came a letter from USCIS that I need to produce a certain document for my change of status (I-485) to be processed. I learned from my lawyer that he used the all industry data base instead of the collective bargaining agreement. Of course I have no knowledge of these required documents since it is the job of the lawyer. When I was asked about documents, I gave everything that I have in my possession.So I told the lawyer to complete all the requirements USCIS is asking since CBA part should be initiated by the law firm.To my understanding he had been having communication with USCIS.Then the sad day came when I received a letter informing me that my I-140 was denied, consequently my I-485. I felt betrayed by my lawyer who is supposed to represent me, by not providing what USCIS is asking- the CBA document.The next thing I did was to get another lawyer who filed an appeal. I hope USCIS would realized that the client (me) had nothing more to do after all documents in my possession had been submitted to the lawyer. Certainly the CBA is not in my possession and I had no idea that the lawyer used the all industry data base.I hope and pray in God's name that USCIS would decide on my favor since I am completely innocent on what documents the lawyer used.

 
At March 23, 2010 at 2:16:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I see lots of posts with excellent ideas for USCIS. But I really do not know if the deciding authorities (top level executives) in USCIS will read these posts. I also do not know even if they read these posts they will take some initiatives.

Looks like to me that USCIS has ultimate power to add restriction on top of bills enacted by the congress, but has no power (or not willing) to address the issues/unfairness in the system.

Very sorry, but that is how I feel after a wait of 9 years, waiting for Employment based Green card. The current estimate is I will get my Green card in 34 years.

I lost my hopes years back.

 
At March 23, 2010 at 5:31:00 PM EDT , Anonymous BK said...

I am checking this blog once a day to see at least some responsible person will address our concerns in waiting time for employment based green card. But as usual, people are absorbing all the information and see no action on it.

Can some one please respond about our employment based green card issues?

Thank you.

 
At March 23, 2010 at 7:14:00 PM EDT , Anonymous OMC said...

Dear USCIS Blog Team,
I wish that you give some feedback to my comment as it would be a very useful information for me and many other applicants.

Recently, there has been a change to the filing location of some of the applications. This was a step geared towards increased efficiency on the part of the Service.

For some inevitable reasons there has been some delay in receipting the applications that were recently sent to the Lockbox facility (Phoenix in particular), which does not reflect the desired improvement in case processing efficiency.

Applicants are anxious to know that their case(s) are been processed, i.e. accepted for adjudication or otherwise rejected. But instead what we have is a vacuum of uncertainty of what the situation is since applications received at the Lockbox are not being duly receipted.

Please can you provide information about the delay in the initial processing timelines at the Phoenix Lockbox. Because your previous comments on this blog indicates that a receipt ought to have been issued within 72hr but my case has not been receipted even after 23 days.

 
At March 24, 2010 at 2:55:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I had processed H1B visa by my current company IBM and all approved documents I recieved, but not stamped yet. My question is that, If I move to current company to another company, Can I use this H1B ? or Can I go for stamp the visa individually without any consent of IBM and travel personally ?

 
At March 24, 2010 at 9:33:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've been in this country legally for 11 years i came here in 1999 and still waiting for my green card havnt seen my family for 8 years It is really sad i pay my tax regularly. the thing i dont unserstand the people who are already here they speak english and have good education work hard and pay tax they are waiting for years but on the other hand i have personally met 4 people here they came here on visa lotery dont speak english dont have any education jobs and we hard working people have to pay for them this is not fair i have been paying tax from last 10 years and i work really hard i think this is unfair to people like me USCIS should give GC to people who are here Already have good education working hard and contributing-to-the-economy other than brining uneducated People here who dont know anything. thanks for listening im really frustrated :(

 
At March 24, 2010 at 2:10:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good heavens! Didn't know that there are people waiting for 10+ years for their employment based GC. This is unacceptable. I can't even begin to imagine the stress they are under, given all the uncertainties and being at the mercy of their employers [some of whom very likely are unscrupulous crooks!]. It is HIGH TIME we adopt a POINT SYSTEM to take care of the talented, hardworking folks who came here legally and are productive members of the community. It is WRONG to benefit from their talents and hard work and take their tax dollars and keep them in limbo. This is just NOT RIGHT. This is not what America is about. USCIS, Congress... it is time to wake up and smell the coffee... and DO SOMETHING!

 
At March 24, 2010 at 3:33:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nice to see BEACON live. I hope it serves as the HOPE for many immigrants who are visiting/staying/working in the great country of USA.

From the many comments listed I see most of them pertaining to employment-based backlog. I had come across the spillover mechanism of USCIS in allocating visa numbers for employment-based GC applicants.

My question to USCIS director would be, why cannot the USCIS use the spillover visa numbers be used to clear backlogs? There are laws and everyone must abide, but by using spillover to clear backlogs, we can reward people who have paid their dues for a longer time in this country and also helps to USCIS to keep their applications more recent.

It seems like a win-win situation to me, but wondering whether USCIS has ever thought in this direction. Also, many small business companies in this country can use the money saved via fees to attorney and USCIS for expanding their business if the backlogs are cleared. Isn't it fair to follow the first in, first out policy for the spillover visa numbers?

 
At March 24, 2010 at 3:52:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Heartfelt thanks for making such an effort to answer consumer grievances. My Admiration for this administration and their efforts to improve communication is growing exponentially every day. God Bless you and God Bless America.

1.0) IS this Pending EB Inventory report published on 3/8/2010 includes all the cases pending at?
a. Consular Posts
b. NVC
c. TSC
d. NSC
e. District offices
f. is there any other places EB Visa's adjudicated or could be pending?
If not when we can expect all inclusive report?

2.0) According USCIS how much % error in data Completeness in Pending inventory.

3.0) Can USCIS generate Pending Inventory report monthly with calendar dates for e.g. data as of last day of every month???

4.0) If not monthly can USCIS generate Pending Inventory report for the quarter??? For e.g. as of Quarter ended on Dec, 31st during 1st week of January, Quarter ended on March, 31st during 1st week of April, Quarter ended on June, 30th during 1st week of July & Quarter ended on Sept, 30th during 1st week of Oct. This will help us to review report by fiscal year without an overlap of old fiscal year.

5.0) INA section Sec 201 (2) mentions usages of visa per “Calendar Quarter” with maximum limit of 27% per quarter. As EB2 & EB3 categories are retro gassed Are Minimum 140k/4 Visa's consumed every quarter? If no which section of INA being applied to not to do so?

6.0) Where we can find USCIS published monthly EB VISA approval report, similar to report published by DOL.

7.0) Where we can find USCIS published monthly rejection report.

8.0) where we can find USCIS published monthly withdrawal report (due to PD porting to other categories or Employer withdrawal.)

9.0) where we can find USCIS published monthly VISA return (unused) to DOS report, as per Operation of the Numerical Control Process all unused VISA’s need to be returned to DOS for re-issuance.

10.0) where we can find USCIS published monthly VISA request to DOS. This will help us to identify where is Gap? Is DOS issuing less or Is CIS consuming less.

11.0) How do you propose to reconcile the pending data reported by DOS and USCIS.
We are Comparing data from two sources USCIS published pending inventory and DOS published monthly determination, And we have Found data Differences for following categories,
USCIS Pending for EB3-China as on March 08, 2010 === 5,575
DOS Pending for EB3-China as on March 01, 2010 === 8,900
USCIS Pending for EB2-India as on March 08, 2010 === 39,081
DOS Pending for EB2-India as on March, 01, 2010 === 37,200

USCIS Pending for EB2-China as on March 08, 2010 === 16,630
DOS Pending for EB2-China as on March, 01, 2010 === 15,900
USCIS Pending for EB3-India as on March 08, 2010 === 59,636
DOS Pending for EB3-India as on March 01, 2010 === 59,500

 
At March 24, 2010 at 4:13:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Charles Oppenheim,
Greetings!!
Firstly, we would like to congratulate the administration for taking the right steps by changing the USCIS website and making detailed information available to the applicants. We would like to also thank the administration for proactively working on pending I-485 cases and pre-adjudicating them.
We are writing to get clarification regarding the law that control the unused VISA numbers falling across to other countries here after referred as “Spill-over” process. Looking at the VISA date movement in every last calendar quarter in the past few years, it made us believe that Visa usage by USCIS is not 140K/4 = 35K minimum per quarter and Maximum of 37.8K as per section 201 (2) followed by USCIS is yearly and not quarterly.
The law being referred as defined in Immigration and Nationality Act: Section ACT 202 - Numerical Limitation to any single foreign state under Sec. 202. [8 U.S.C. 1152]
Sec 201 (2) says for employment-based immigrant number not to exceed in any of the first 3 quarters of any fiscal year 27 percent of the worldwide level.
(3) Exception if additional visas available. - If because of the application of paragraph (2) with respect to one or more foreign states or dependent areas, ...
(5) 2/ RULES FOR EMPLOYMENT-BASED IMMIGRANTS
(A) EMPLOYMENT-BASED IMMIGRANTS NOT SUBJECT TO PER COUNTRY LIMITATION IF ADDITIONAL VISAS AVAILABLE- If the total number of visas available under paragraph (1), (2), (3), (4), or (5) of section 203(b) …...
(B) LIMITING FALL ACROSS FOR CERTAIN COUNTRIES SUBJECT TO SUBSECTION (e)- In the case of a foreign state or dependent area to which subsection (e) applies, if the total number of visas issued under section 203(b) exceeds the maximum ….
Our interpretation of the Section 202(a)(5) of the Immigration and Nationality Act states that if total demand will be insufficient to use all available numbers in a particular Employment preference category in a *calendar quarter*, then the unused numbers may be made available without regard to the annual “per-country” limit. We feel that *quarterly Visa Usage of 35K minimum helps* both the administration as well as the applicants.
By using 140K/4 = 35K minimum will benefit administration by:
1) Steady VISA movement will increase visibility for the administration and in turn will help administration to better forecast forward movement of VISA dates.
2) Spill-over when issued quarterly, effectively reduces/minimizes chances of visas wastages as the burden is not pushed at the end of fiscal year.



3) Balanced workload for the immigration officers and card issue helping USCIS to better
4) manage efficiently, as Spill-over is divided in 4 quarters, rather only in last calender quarter(July – September).
5) Spill-over when issued quarterly means saving administrative effort, time and money in processing EAD, Advance parole applications for the petitioners who may get GCs as much as 9 months earlier and who are having close Approval dates.
6) Effective forward movement of VISA dates will give opportunity for potential applicants to file I-485 earlier, which in turn will bring steady new workload to administration.

By using 140K/4 = 35K will benefit Applicants by:
1) Existing applicants potentially will be able to get their permanent residencies 6-8 months in advance.
2) New petitioners will be able to file their I-485, EAD and AP sooner due to Forward movement in VISA dates.
3) Streamlined VISA movement helps retrogressed Applicants effectively estimate their approval dates to plan their future appropriately.
As explained above by following quarterly Spill-over process as defined by law will be beneficial for both administration and applicants. We would appreciate your kind clarification/action on implementation of this existing rule.
Thank you!!

Sincerely,

 
At March 24, 2010 at 5:10:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am a physician from India. I will probably take 5-7 years before I can get my Greencard. My concern is the long process particularly for physicians. I am did a residency for 3 years (on H1B) and fellowship for 3 years (on H1B) before practicing in the United States. During this time, no employer will sponsor for employement based greencard since this is not a permanent employement and considered as training period. After the 6 year training period when you get started on your job - you will need an additional 6-7 years ( due to backlog) before you can get a Greencard. Until then one needs to be employed by somebody else. My concern is the long wait before one can get the Greencard ( almost 12-13 years over all). A physician can start his own office and employ several other ancillary personnel such as nurses, lab technicians, front desk personnel etc.. and create tremendous employement oppurtunities in this economy. This is not possible without getting a Greencard. With the health care reform we are adding 32 million Americans to the health care system which will tremendously overwhelm the health care personnel and significantly worsen the already existent physician shortage. I am very concerned that the slow immigration process not only negatively impacts the individual but also is extremely detrimental to the health care system. Doctors already go through a LONG training period which includes medical school for 6 years, residencies and fellowship for another 6 years minimum. I feel that expediting the immigration of physicians is necessary to stimulate economy and improve our health care.

 
At March 24, 2010 at 5:46:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear USCIS officers,

USCIS is awarding green card to children (Employment based applicant's dependent) in EB1, Eb2, EB3, EB4 and EB5 category. Grouping children in these category is wrong, not legal and UnAmerican.

This grouping of children as EB1, EB2 EB3 etc is not in the Immigration law that Congress passed. This is the invention of USCIS via adminstrative rule making process.

This adminstrative rule needs to be modified. Please do that immedeately.

Thanks

 
At March 24, 2010 at 5:53:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear USCIS director,

I applied for Green card (Employment category) 8 years back. Based on the my estimate (as per the data published by USCIS), I will get green card in 30 years, i.e at 2040.

If I retire before 2040, what will happen to my green card process?

Thanks & Rgeards

 
At March 24, 2010 at 6:42:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think we (the legal backloged immigrants)are doing more homework than USCIS officers. Isn't that great? I wish there could be law that after 2 years of wait, waiting applicants will be given the tax credit for not giving us the benefits we deserve.

God! WHEN USCIS OFFICERS WILL SMELL THE COFFEE?

KNOCK KNOCK OFFICERS! WAKE-UP! COFFEE IS BOILING.

It is high time please. Free us from this mess please.

God Bless us all.

 
At March 24, 2010 at 9:51:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Answers? All I see are questions... Where are the answers?!!

Was the following said in sarcasm?

"Heartfelt thanks for making such an effort to answer consumer grievances. My Admiration for this administration and their efforts to improve communication is growing exponentially every day."

 
At March 25, 2010 at 10:11:00 AM EDT , Anonymous BK said...

Read your testimony from http://judiciary.house.gov/hearings/pdf/Mayorkas100323.pdf

You didn't even mention single word about dead blockage of employment visa for India and China.

Any word from you Mr.Director?

 
At March 25, 2010 at 11:09:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Heartfelt thanks was from heart. Please don't make this blog a place to vent your frustrations. USCIS is moving and right directions and we need to acknowledge the same. We need to look at their side to, once they will receive questions, they've need to prepare responses consult with their legal team and then respond on this blog. So there might be Little dealy, But don't loose HOPE.

Mr. President has promised us a change and Hope, ia m sure seeing it, don't you?

12.0) what is rational of EB3-India Visa approval only approximately 100 a month? We feel that before EB3-I become unavailable it should get 140*7%*28.6% = 2802 VISA’s. EB3-I VISA reductions from Inventory reports before their Priority Date is as follows,
a) Between Inventory Published 08/28/09 & 03/08/2010 = 516
b) Between Inventory Published between 12/11/2209 & 03/08/2010 = 367
This Eb3-I 100/month number was confirmed by comparing data from DOS published monthly determination report.
13.0) Where we can find USCIS published monthly EB/FB I485 approval report, similar to report published by DOL.
14.0) Where we can find USCIS published monthly I140 approval report, similar to report published by DOL.

 
At March 25, 2010 at 11:18:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

March 8, 2010

To: USCIS Director Mayorkas

From: Gary Endelman and Cyrus D. Mehta

Re: Proposals for Agency Action to Ameliorate the Priority Dates Crisis

The whole idea of priority dates is not to prevent immigration but to regulate it. That is not what is happening today. If you are from Mexico or the Philippines, the family-based quotas delay permanent migration to the U.S. to such an extent that it is virtually blocked. If you are from China or India, the implosion of the employment-based second preference (EB-2) and third preference (EB-3) categories do not regulate your coming permanently to the U.S.; it makes it functionally impossible. According to a press release by former DHS Ombudsman Prakash Khatri, the situation, based on incomplete statistics released by the USCIS and the State Department is even more dire than it appears, and is discriminatory too as the wait for persons born in India may be 35 years. See Prakash Khatri, National-Origin Quotas Unfairly Penalizing Visa Applicants from Most Populous Nations Harming U.S. Economy, Feb. 2, 2010, http://www.khatrilaw.us/leadership.html.



http://cyrusmehta.com/news.aspx?SubIdx=ocyrus20103925436

Please allow People who are waiting for more than 10 years I-140 approved to file I-485 and get their EAD and AP, It is ridiculous to wait for 30, 40 years for the GC. Please read the above proposals and do nned ful Sir.

 
At March 25, 2010 at 1:31:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

USCIS is just another glaring example of a failed government institution, just like USPS and so many more.
The pace at which the things move in USCIS, is nothing but a sign of a moribund institution.

Current economic times should motivate the current administration in Washington to take a closer relook at the very existence of such institutions, which employ thousands of people using taxpayers money, but the output is shamelessly poor!

I used to think India is full of redtapism, bureaucracy, but by seeing the working of this institution, which is probably serving just a fraction of what India's corporations serve, I think India is much much better.

If it was not for my wife and kids who are americans, i would have been long gone.

 
At March 25, 2010 at 2:07:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please FREEZE the Lottery system, until the backlog of people who are already here for 10+ years is cleared. A decade is a long time for keeping one's life "on hold". This is not fair. Please make the 50,000 visa(s) available for the backlogs. And, please add another 50,000 to take care of the backlogs. In 2007 all categories were current. Why not aim for that in 2010. With careful planning and execution, we can do that. In a sense Raj's proposal might work. For people who are here for 10+ years let there be a premium processing fee of $1000, and let their cases be adjusted without further delay. BTW, I am an US citizen and in a different category of dilemma. Never the less, I feel terrible that this kind of backlog exists in America of all countries and in 2010, when such great technological advances have been made and can easily help in solving this bottle neck.

So, PLEASE FREEZE THE LOTTERY SYSTEM FOR NOW. PLEASE TAKE CARE OF THE FOLKS WHO ARE ALREADY HERE. TALENTED AND HARDWORKING LAW ABIDING PEOPLE SHOULD NOT BE TREATED THIS WAY. THIS IS UN-AMERICAN. PLEASE MAKE 100,000 VISAS AVAILABLE FOR TAKING CARE OF THE BACKLOG.

USCIS: PLEASE RESPOND.

THANK YOU!

 
At March 25, 2010 at 7:36:00 PM EDT , Blogger Balaji said...

If the below proposal is feasible, please give us Freedom.

RE-DEFINING “IMMEDIATELY AVAILABILE” TO ALLOW EARLY FILING OF AN ADJUSTMENT OF STATUS APPLICATION

By Gary Endelman and Cyrus D. Mehta

We continue to blog on the salient ideas in our article, Tyranny of Priority Dates, published in BIB Daily, http://drop.io/EndelmanMehtaTyrannyofPriorityDates/m, on March 25, 2010.

Would it not be advantageous if those caught in the crushing EB-2 or EB-3 backlogs could file an adjustment of status application, Form I-485, based on a broader definition of visa availability? It would only be more fair to allow someone to file an I-485 application sooner than many years later if all the conditions towards the green card have been fulfilled, such as labor certification and approval of the Form I-140. Upon filing of an I-485 application, one can enjoy the benefits of occupational mobility or “portability” under INA § 204(j) and children who are turning 21 can gain the protection of the Child Status Protection Act if their age is frozen below 21. Moreover, the applicant, including derivative family members, can also obtain employment authorization, which they otherwise would not be able to get on an H-4 dependent visa.

Unfortunately, INA § 245(a)(3) only allows the filing of an I-485 application when the visa is immediately available to the applicant, and this would need a Congressional fix. We know that Congress either NEVER makes any sensible fix or takes a very long time to do so. So, why not find a way for the immigration agency, USCIS, to allow for an I-485 filing before the priority date becomes current, and still be faithful to § 245(a)(3)?

The only regulation that defines visa availability is 8 C.F.R. § 245(g)(1), which provides:

An alien is ineligible for the benefits of section 245 of the Act unless an immigrant visa is immediately available to him or her at the time the application is filed. If the applicant is a preference alien, the current Department of State Bureau of Consular Affairs Visa Bulletin will be consulted to determine whether an immigrant visa is immediately available. An immigrant visa is considered available for accepting and processing the application Form I-485 [if] the preference category applicant has a priority date on the waiting list which is earlier than the date shown in the Bulletin (or the Bulletin shows that numbers for visa applicants in his or her category are current). An immigrant visa is also considered immediately available if the applicant establishes eligibility for the benefits of Public Law 101-238. Information concerning the immediate availability of an immigrant visa may be obtained at any Service office.

Under 8 C.F.R. § 245.1(g)(1), why must visa availability be based solely on whether one has a priority date on the waiting list which is earlier shown in the Visa Bulletin? Why can’t “immediately available” be re-defined based on a qualifying or provisional date? We are all so accustomed to paying obeisance to the holy grail of “priority date” that we understandably overlook the fact that this all-important gatekeeper is nowhere defined. Given the collapse of the priority date system, all of us must get used to thinking of it more as a journey than a concrete point in time. The adjustment application would only be approved when the provisional date becomes current, but the new definition of immediately available visa can encompass a continuum: a provisional date that leads to a final date, which is only when the foreign national can be granted Legal Permanent Resident status but the provisional date will still allow a filing as both provisional and final dates will fall under the new regulatory definition of immediately available. During this period, the I-485 application is properly filed under INA 245(a)(3) through the new definition of immediately available through the qualifying or provisional date.

The authors propose the following amendments to 8 C.F.R. § 245(g)(1), shown here in bold, that would expand the definition of visa availability:

 
At March 25, 2010 at 7:57:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Are we really going to get any meaningful and helpful response from USCIS?

I hope USCIS is serious about helping us.

Thank you very much.

 
At March 26, 2010 at 10:31:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please free us of this slavery. Waiting 5 to 10 years plus, for green card in EB3 category is just feels like being tortured, harassed, and punished. Life is a living hell for us in EB3 category due to severe backlogs. We can't change jobs, can't move freely, this is very stressful being in EB3 category.

We have not committed any crime, we have paid taxes, we follow all the rules, we love USA, then why this kind of treatment from a country the entire world looks up to as a role model of freedom and justice?

Can we get justice please. Our lives are on hold. Our families are suffering and our kids are suffering even though USA is the only country they know about as they have lived here for 10 plus years.

PLEASE HELP US. PLEASE HELP US.

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR LISTENING.

REGARDS.

 
At March 26, 2010 at 12:19:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for this opportunity.

1.I'm in the US in an R1 status but have not yet received the matching visa. I've found myself in a situation where the petitioning organisation has not yet offered a pay-check since approval of this status (May 2009). I continue to work nonetheless. Recently, I've asked for a pay stub and letter from the organisation to enable me to travel to my local embassy to receive the correct visa. The head (which was changed since the filing) of the organisation is adamantly refusing. I live here with my four children who are US citizens in a house which we bought. I own land in Texas, hold a valid social security card and pay taxes. I'm also enrolled in school. What are my options given this situation?

2.My husband ( a lawyer residing in the Caribbean) and I entered the visa lottery last year. Since the submission of the application, we've purchased a house and the children and I have moved. How do I change my address for purposes of contact by USCIS if we are selected?

Blessings. Thank you.

 
At March 26, 2010 at 1:19:00 PM EDT , Anonymous BK said...

View endelman-mehta-the-tyranny-of-priority-dates-3-25-10-final-pdf

 
At March 26, 2010 at 1:28:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Buck,

May I suggest a few steps to streamline the process and assist the future citizens of this country we are proudly part of.

1. Please freeze the lottery system for now. Make the 50,000 visas and an additional 50,000 visas available to process applicants who have been here 10 years or longer. The additional 100,000 visas should take care of the priority date mess.

2. For folks who are here for less than ten years, let them be given an interim GC and EADs.

3. We Americans hate to stand in queue for long. Just imagine standing in a queue for ten years or more. Terrible, isn't it?

4. Please respond to the points raised by the people on this blog, once a day. Or, if that's not possible, then every Monday, Wednesday & Friday. If that is not possible either then every Tuesday and Thursday. Or, at the least every Friday.

5. Communication is a two way street. As the chief of communications, would you please incorporate these policies and take the suggestions to Mr. Mayorkas to ease the pain and suffering of a vast group of talented, hardworking and tax paying, law abiding folks.

Thank you!

 
At March 26, 2010 at 3:12:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear USCIS team,

Why not USCIS meet with the real beneficiaries (applicants like me), like you meet with lawyers regularly?

Also the USCIS should publish the meeting minutes of its meetings with all outside groups/organizations. What is there to hide?

Thanks & Regards.

 
At March 26, 2010 at 3:40:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Restore fairness and equal justice.
Asylee's AOS or pending LPR Cases put on hold due to material support bar, if later approved with the possible passage of the new and currently pending legislation in Congress S-3113,such cases should be post dated to the year that the asylum application was approved, fairness and under the equal justice system.

 
At March 26, 2010 at 4:23:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please stop counting dependents for EB1/2/3 towards the yearly quota and release or count it towards per family or primary applicant

 
At March 27, 2010 at 1:15:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

........"While we will not respond to all comments, we will do our best to ensure that this blog is a timely, two-way conversation"......

Hubert "Buck" Humphrey
Chief, USCIS Office of Communications
----------------------------------------

Since you made this quote, USCIS response has been MUTE to the many posts. This should be a more engaged blog.

The impression is that you are listening but not communicating and not taking the customers seriously. There have been some great suggestions which you really need to respond to and USCIS should consider.

The LEGAL EB immigrant community continues to be unsure and frustrated with the exceedingly long wait for GC. PEOPLE SHOULD NOT BE HELD IN THIS KIND OF LIMBO. Our future plans are on HOLD. TAKE A PAUSE TO UNDERSTAND THAT.

Please consider the renewal costs endured anually for AP for overseas travel and Drivers Licenses, bianually for EAD, etc over a mimiumum 10 year period while we wait, for a family of four. We pay taxes, cannot receive HOMESTEAD exemption (FLORIDA) when we purchase a home etc.

Emancipate us from this "BONDAGE"!!!!!

 
At March 27, 2010 at 3:36:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

What about 212a3b please? My appilication for i485 is on hold for this reason alone. After name check and fp are normal why do we have to be labeled as terrorists??? We came to this country because we were terrorized back home. We are not terrorists please fix 212a3b the undesignated groups. Please please or tell us what we did wrong?

Thank you.

 
At March 27, 2010 at 11:36:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let me start by expressing my thanks to USCIS for this blog service. I have noticed also in reading through the comments already posted that USCIS has responded at intervals to some of them. Thank you!

I would like to appeal to you (USCIS), as humans too, to take an honest look at the realities you subject applicants of I-130 to. We were granted legal status by this great country. We work and live by the law, but yet are denied the joy of union with our loved ones. It almost feels like we are being told it's ILLEGAL to get married from outside the U.S after being granted permanent residency.

What is fair, humane, or even just about keeping newly wedded couples apart for up to 4 years and more? Do you have any idea how many families you have destroyed in the process? A broken family, no refund and no appologies! If you consider your offering us the status of permanent residents in the U.S a previlege, that can never be a justification in any way for destroying the lives and bond of families. It's just not right!

I have witnessed a friend who is not a permanent resident go back to his Asian country, got married and came back with his wife. Even if she is here as an immigrant without work permit, that is still a family united together, and this is all we seek as well.

I hope someone will think about our plights and be generous enough to look into it.

Thank you!

 
At March 29, 2010 at 2:40:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Buck,

How to resolve the AOS backlog mess?

1. Abolish the archaic system, which has been in existence for numerous years with very little improvements. After many trials and tribulations we are here in 2010! The numbers of the past [140,000, 24,800 etc.] doesn't work any more. Time to dig out our heads from the sands of yesterday and face reality!

2. Let us first clear the mess in our hands before offering visas by "Diversity lottery" [more on that on a separate posting, since I smell a fish here ;-)]. FREEZE the lottery system for now. Make those 50,000 visas available for the backlog cases. Add another 50,000 to it.

3. Immediately start processing the applications of people who are waiting in line for 10 years or more [irrespective of country of origin. We cannot have and eat our cake too. We cannot bring in qualified people from certain countries and keep them waiting in line, while others gets ahead... this is not the American way]. Adopt FIFO [First In First Out]. Start processing the cases which are waiting the longest]. To hire more people to do the job, add a $1000 fees. Win-win situation. Revenues for USCIS, Job for the unemployed, Freedom for the enslaved.

4. One visa for the primary beneficiaries. The derivatives should be included in that ONE visa.

5.To retain valuable talents [let's face it, we do have a shortage of that here] adopt a POINT SYSTEM.
One point for each year of legal stay.
Five points for an advanced degree from US
Five points if the applicant has US citizen relative [we Americans believe in family unity, right?]. Then if an applicant has Ten points, let him/her pay a special ten point fee of $1000, and be allowed to apply for AOS [Green card].

6. And, last but not the least. Abolish all the EAD, AP baloney [except for a two year EAD for Practical training]. Introduce a YELLOW card, which should be given when a person is eligible for AOS and applies for it under the FIFO or TEN POINT System, while their application is being adjudicated. The YELLOW CARD [granted after a fees of $1000 is paid and eligibility criteria are met. Processing must be done in 60 days or less] will work as a work authorization and travel permit.

My URGENT REQUEST to Director Alejandro Mayorkas, Can we do that and break free from this juggernaut?

As the Chief of Communications, would you please personally make sure that this letter is brought to his attention.

And since communication is a two way street, may we expect a response from you please, and sometime soon!?

Thank you and God bless!

 
At March 29, 2010 at 3:08:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Background of AOS mess:

1.Employers could not find enough no. of talented and skilled US employees. Highly qualified and talented people brought from Asia. Petition filed on their behalf. Beneficiaries stands in queue. Indefinite wait starts.

2. Why such a long period of waiting time? Because Congress doesn't care. These people waiting in line do not vote [yet!]. And our Congress lacks foresight.

3. USCIS doesn't care because there are lot of revenues to be made from EAD and AP fees while these people are waiting.

4. Employers don't care because they can hold the LC and petition over the head and lives of these hapless employees.

5. Employees are stuck in this quagmire, having sacrificed a lot to come here and having made a lot of investment in terms of their time, hard work and contributions.

Where do we go from here? Towards a solution? Or just continue with business as usual while putting some band aid over a gaping wound?

 
At March 29, 2010 at 3:08:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Without USCIS response, this is a waste blog and people can continue to express there frustations for ever. It must have been nice if the USCIS Administration had taken some time to respond to some of the VALID questions.
As there is no response , it shows the lack of interest from USSIC end to reduce the backlog, it is just another way to frustrate the people and showing off that we are doing something :) We don't need one way BLOGS , we need GC !!

 
At March 29, 2010 at 3:23:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Looks like the stories people told so far turn out to be like explaining something to deaf ears.(USCIS) The reality is people can't face the bitter truth so they block their ears. They really know how much pain and uncertainty people like us are bearing everyday, and they know they are partly responsible for that. Hearing this truth from us, they might be feeling guilty and awkward. So in such situation, they have just covered their ears!

We do not see any other reason why USCIS is not even responding to all these comments here.

 
At March 29, 2010 at 3:46:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr. Hubert Humphrey, Chief of Communications

Dear Sir,

Here is a solution for the AOS mess to add towards solving the crisis [in more spheres than one] at hand.

Please create a special category of EB6 visas for people who are legally in this country for at least five years. Let these people invest $250,000 towards purchase of a foreclosed or short sale home and it's repair/updating etc. While making improvements they should employ US citizens and PR workers. The $250,000 can be invested in a failing business too. Give a YELLOW CARD [after an application fees of $1000 has been paid and eligibility criteria are met]. Process the YELLOW CARD in 60 days or less. Give, up to two years to make the investment. When this clause has been satisfied, give them the GREEN CARD!

Do not put any limit on the visas available under this scheme. Then sit back and see US economy rebound and enjoy the appreciation of thousands of immigrants and US citizens. Be a part of the SOLUTION!

Please bring this message to the attention of the Director of USCIS. And, since communication is a two way street please respond to the suggestions and let us know if USCIS is going to ACT upon them to clear the AOS backlog. Thank you!

 
At March 29, 2010 at 4:13:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear USCIS ,

We (me,mum and father in india) want to apply for Asylum . Since USCIS in india is not mandated to assist indian citizen residing in india, The officer who interviewed us at the US Embassy asked for a letter from USCIS stating to grant us asylum at the US port of entry.I have atlest sent 100 emails to USCIS in india but they didn't give us a letter .Its been a month .

In the meantime we are falling into more and more danger and the hate speech among the people we reside due to our US Embassy visit are enormous.

Please guide us as to how to seek such official letter from USCIS in india who is not mandated to assist indian citizen residing in india.We do not want to lose our family(we lost my grandmother already to indians)staying in india anylonger .Thank you very much .

 
At March 29, 2010 at 4:32:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here is human psychology:

When people can't face the bitter truth, they block their ears and shut their mouth. Everybody really know how much pain and uncertainty EB2 and EB3 people are bearing everyday due dark tunnel of uncertainty due to backlog. When people know they are partly responsible for causing other people so much pain and making their life like hell, they feel guilty and awkward. So in such situation, they have just cover their ears!

 
At March 29, 2010 at 5:07:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good day to you. It appears that the USCIS is unaware that applications to the Phoenix lockbox are not receiving notices after 4 weeks while those to the Texas lockbox in the 1st week of March already have notices and even decisions!!!. What is the USCIS doing to ameliorate this discrepancy so we can get on with our lives? A concrete response will be appreciated.

 
At March 29, 2010 at 5:26:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ten years ago my family and I came on vacation, first time travelling as a family and a long and hectic day. Later that night we realized we left the folder with all out travel documents, money and jewelry in the cab. Big mistake, was never able to recover anything. We were stuck for months trying to get replacement documents. Eventually my husband lost his job back home, we had to put the kids in school and try to do the right thing by staying in legal status so my husband enrolled in college, sold our house to pay for it and life moved on. He graduated with an asso in engineering and after three long and hard years he had to enroll again (to stay in status). Now because he did the right thing he is being peanalized because of his F1 status he has to return home to be processed. We cannot afford to go. There's no where for a family of six with no money. We cannot change status here. Why is he being punished for getting an education, when we have friends who are getting their green card here right now.


We have kids taking their SAT'S. They're honor students who can't go to college. What do we tell them, that after encouraging them to study and work hard they cannot go on to higher education when all their friends can. Thats unfair to them. Something needs to be done to allow them to go on to college and have a future like anyone else.

 
At March 29, 2010 at 6:05:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Seems like someone is concerned for legal immigrants too, that too who are intellectuals, who are investing their hard work for the benefit of better society, because we pay taxes. We go through our attorneys which generate jobs/business for them. But that cycle has become so long that I am tired of paying $500 every time I have to renew some of my stuff, yes I know I can do it by myself too, but what if a RFI is created and blah blah....I am not buying a house because I do not have GC, I am investing money in in stocks because getting the money out is easy. I cannot start a business because what if I am booted out of this GC process.....You already know all these problems, I guess actions should speak not the BLOGS.

 
At March 30, 2010 at 10:57:00 AM EDT , Anonymous GW said...

Hello USCIS. This shouldn't be that hard to look into. Concerning marriage based AOS filed at the Chicago Lockbox: K visa holders have a medical exam in their foreign country prior to visa issuance. They turn in the medical results in a brown envelope, sealed by the Embassy, to immigration when they enter the US. USCIS forms and documentation clearly state that another exam does not have to be completed for AOS if the exam is less than one year old. The brown envelope file is supposed to be retrieved from a records center when an AOS application is received. Starting in November 2009 a rash of requests for evidence started being received by K visa holders adjusting status. The request was for a medical exam. I don't think it is coincidence that new contractors took over processing files at the Chicago Lockbox in the fall of 2009. Because the K visa holders are a small group, is it possible that the new contractors have not been instructed to order the A-file to match up with the AOS submission of these people? Info pass workers at local offices have begun to tell people to send back the instructions highlighted showing the rules in response to the request for evidence. Others spend several hundred dollars just to have another exam, a few months after paying similar amounts for the same exam to get their visa. Meanwhile their case is delayed. This has nothing to do with immunizations. It is that the USCIS says there is no medical exam. When the said medical exam was turned over to US officials at entry, there is nothing the immigrant can do to provide another copy. This has been reported hundreds of times since November, when prior to that, it was rare that a medical file was lost. Could somebody please make a phone call to the supervisor in charge of the Chicago Lockbox and find out why so many A-files are not being ordered to provide the medical results for K visa holders adjusting status?

 
At March 30, 2010 at 3:51:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

USCIS must be laughing with all these comments...and saying this NO MATTER WHAT...YES WE CAN'T (CHANGE)

 
At March 30, 2010 at 8:37:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

A comment on I-130 application.

I would appreciate it if USCIS could clarify these;

1. After an application has been approved and sent to the NVC, then it has to wait, if necessary, to qualify for further processing based on the current "priority date" under consideration. Is the "priority date" an average for all countries with applications? I do not see how the situation at the various consular offices in the different countries of applicants can be exactly the same. Specifically, the situation in the consular office in my country do not have any backlog, but upon enquiry was told that they only get to process new applications whenever they are sent any from the NVC here in the U.S.
I guess my question really then is, why do we have to be held back because of some other situation(s) elsewhere? I was very shocked and dismayed by this finding because USCIS have always given the impression that efforts are being made to adjudicate all pending applications. However, several thousands of applications, maybe, have been held up for years when given the perculiar situations at some U.S consular offices like the one's in my country, such applications could have been completely adjudicated maybe years ago, reducing consequently also the total volume left to be addressed by USCIS.

2. When an application gets approved, and is forwarded to the NVC, would USCIS be willing to look into the possiblity of at least granting visiting right for a specified period within a 12-caendar month when beneficiaries of applications could be alloewd to visit with their loved ones here in the U.S while they await your approval to be able to stay and live in the U.S? Since they will eventually be transiting to the U.S eventually, I dont think it's an extreme case, if you granted these petition. It would in no little way go far in alleviating the many hardships we're experiencing following through with your protocols. Currently, USCIS legally already do this when you grant temporary visas to the family of non-immigrants who either are schooling or working for instance here in the U.S. And in many cases, many of them through this path that you've made available have become permanent residents and eventually citizens.
I cannot think of any reason why such generosity from you would be abused, since I and I imagine other applicants like myself would not want to jeopardize the effort we have put in to get as far as having our application approved. Besides, I can assure you that the waiting process would become more bearable and the whole immigration process feel more humane.

I specifically did not state my country because I do not want any reprisal on account of the information I enumerated earlier.

Clearly, you are doing your best to address every application going by the improvements that have been reported in your news link on the USCIS website. But please treat each country based on the situations at their respective local consular offices. Each aplication is unique, each country is unique, why treat us like a single pool?

Would USCIS consider granting temporary visiting rights to our loved ones under conditions as may be specified by you to help ease all of the pain and hardships? Like I noted earlier and that you clearly are aware of yourself, this is something you already do for non-immigrants. Would you consider same for legal immigrants whose applications have been approved by you?

I know this is a lenghty comment, but I wouls appreciate your response.

Thank you.

God Bless the United States of America!

 
At March 30, 2010 at 8:54:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hubert "Buck" Humphrey, I see a lot of good immigrants from time to time who have been waiting for years to have members of their immediate family join them, especially young couples! Do you have any idea what it's like for them?
I'm sure you're just doing your job, but it's so wrong what we put these people through, it's just so wrong!

 
At March 30, 2010 at 10:03:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Mr. Humphrey,
congratulations.I am sure you realized in the first week itself how tough it is.This blog speaks for itself.Now one can close their eyes and work as usual or you can be that person who can do extraordinary things to lift helpless EB people. Every person has a role to play.
Please be that person to help all these EB applicants who are held hostage by USCIS for years. Please work with the director to issue some administrative fixes to remove the green card backlog. you are a lawyer and you know what is fair and unfair. A 10 year wait for a doctor/engineer/lawyer or a PhD to get an EB green card is unfair game. For those people life has frozen years ago with no Christmas or New Year. Please pass this to your director and work on some administrative fixes. Please show us that you really mean business and people who played by the rules will be rewarded.

 
At April 1, 2010 at 2:52:00 PM EDT , Anonymous PAkinniyi said...

I really enjoyed watching "The USCIS Naturalization Interview and Test" video and hope to see more educational pieces like this one in near future. Thank you!

 
At April 1, 2010 at 2:57:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Pamela Akinniyi said...

How do you start a new conversation or different topic from what is currently being posted? I would like to hear from people who are going through or have been throught the I-129F and I-130 process'.

 
At April 1, 2010 at 7:18:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am concerned that the new system of receiving applications at the lockboxes has only added to the frustration experienced by USCIS customers. With the previous system, applications were acknowledged within a week. With this new system, Customer Service reps have told us to wait for at least 6 weeks to have our applications acknowledged. Therefore if you have an EAD with a genuine expedite request,that channel is not open to you because your application is not yet in the system and you can not place a service request for expedite. Peoples jobs, livelihood and families depend on documents like the EAD and since it is a benefit of a pending I485 application, USCIS should consider ensuring that JP Morgan to whom the lockbox facility is contracted to is up to date with the process and able to attain at least the efficiency that the Service centres attained rather than setting us back in time with respect to efficiency of handling applications. As of today the 1st of April, they have handled the lockbox process poorly and I would give them an F!
Please address this issue urgently. Thank you

 
At April 1, 2010 at 11:59:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Last fall, a friend of mine who is an student international student here in Kansas hinted that he would be going home during last winter to get married. I was happy for him. Today, I saw him and his wife! I am a permanent resident going to 5 years this year, I've applied for my wife whom I married 2 years ago through the I-130, and although my application has been approved, my wife has to wait for visa to become available to her based on "priority date". Like someone suggested earlier, can't USCIS allow our loved ones visit us while we await your completion of our applications?

You may want to say that my friends wife probably does not have a work permit and is not on an immigrant visa, and yes you're right, but they at least are united as a family! And certainly they could someday become permanent residents while still living here in the U.S.

I work as an officer in the jail here and everyday i've gone to work, i've put my life on the line to protect American families and families of everyone in my city, and yet, i go home wondering why i should be denied doing the same for my own family?

This is all looking to me like some revenue gerating scheme for the U.S. Imagine that you also ask prospective international students to pay $200 SEVIS fee prior to undergoing their visa interview at your consulate, a fee meant to be for payment for your monitoring of such students when they arrive here in the U.S. Yet, when you deny them visa, you also state that they are not entitled to a refund! Is it their shadows you will be monitoring with the $200 you collected from them?

God help us all, Amen!

 
At April 1, 2010 at 11:59:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for this valuable blog which helps the immigrant community to post their problems.

Please elaborate us on what way we can complain about employers, in case they harrass the employess in the way of salary, documents etc.

 
At April 4, 2010 at 11:30:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for providing opportunity to express our frustration,displeasure,disappointment,ill feeling.
We came here as a permanent residence at the age of 57 years & become a citizen in 2007 for our married son/grandson future.
Since last 3 years after we filed I130, same day we became a citizen (Myself & my wife) we do not know will be alive or not when their petition will approve. Since last 5 months 3rd category has not moved (May2001).
On 10th march we received email that our file moved to National benefits center. On 12Th march we received a second email stating that they moved our petition to uscis.
We are 65 years of age & not able to see our grand son born last year.
Like us many senior citizen may be waiting for their son/grandson to come in USA & may be thinking like us to take their file with them with their final journey.
Working with USCIS we hope they also have family & if they could understand our feeling would really appreciate.

 
At April 4, 2010 at 7:37:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I waited almost 5 years for my greencard only to know yesterday I am inadmissible based on INA.a.3.b? and according to the blogs over the internet there are several groups that are affected with this vague classification. Is your group working in anyway to allivate this problem?

 
At April 5, 2010 at 12:23:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

WHO oversee the USCIS?? Like IRS, USCIS or other agencies, there should be an independent party to oversees or inspect them. So far they are under broken congress who cannot agree on a thing. Big government doesn’t work. No matter what comment you give USCIS; USCIS can’t change anything unless the congress acts on it (Ohh, there is one thing they sure can do easily hike application fees). Big government doesn’t welcome change(s) well because of self-interest or luck of it.

I would love to see senior directors come out and say, USCIS is broken and we are going to work together (USCIS and beneficiary) ON CUSTOMER SERVICE FIRST. This is the main problem

If USCIS make customer service their number one, the rest will follow easily.

What if the reform was to happen today; it will be a nightmare with this broken agency with poor customer service.

Most people will buy customer service no matter how much it cost.
Ex: Has anybody been to US post office; and see how slow, ridiculous and poor customer service is? Thank God to technology (internet) and other companies; I don’t go there. USPS=USCIS minus that you actually get to speak to someone.

USCIS, please start a customer service blog to get specific ideas.

 
At April 6, 2010 at 10:47:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sir, don't you think eleminating the EB backlog must be the first priority for USCIS? To me (technically thinking), backlog reduction has to take place even before CIR. USCIS may point fingure to DoS that they release the visa numbers. But, sir, for us as a applicants, we are your customers. Isn't is USCIS's duty to coordinate with DoS and White House to find ways to eleminate backlog? We are not paying fees to DoS, sir. If USCIS is push to ball into DoS's court then we are the misrable people in this brilliant democratic country. Just my thoughts....thanks.

 
At April 7, 2010 at 1:26:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi,

I am not an expert on this matter but I want to make a point that I noticed on the April 2010 Visa bulletin, I strongly believe that who ever is working on publishing the bulletin needs to spend more time to review the content of the bulletin. Below is one minor example from April 2010 bulletin,

"Allocations were made, to the extent possible under the numerical limitations, for the demand received by May 9th in the chronological order of the reported priority dates."

How can April Bulletin have the demand information for May 9th?

I also strongly believe that there should be a better communication between DOS and USCIS before publishing monthly Bulletin. Minor mistakes in the bulletin can cause a lot of issues to the lives of ordinary immigrants. So please be considerate before issuing the monthly bulletin

 
At April 7, 2010 at 1:41:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

When some people are waiting for employment based green card for 10 years others are getting their green card in less than one year.

What is the integrity of the "employment" based visa system?

 
At April 7, 2010 at 4:56:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is a good initiative by USCIS to improve their services to the clients. I’d like to share my concern on premium processing service of USCIS on I-140 (EB-1). My case was approved within first week of receipt of my application by USCIS office. My employer (and me) was surprised when we received RFE after a month of approval, though, employer submitted response to RFE, this has been almost 4 months now and we’re not sure whether case is still `approved’. This has raised issues with PP services, if USCIS is taking normal processing time e.g. 4 months for I-140, then what is the point of paying PP fees, which says that decision will be made within 15 days on a PP case. Is it a mistake on USCIS side that they issued RFE or issued I-797, notice of approval. Either RFE or notice of approval has been issued by mistake, according to local USCIS officer, though, not cleared yet, which one. We feel frustrated and confused. Is PP fee refundable by USCIS in this case as decision is not clear. Thanks

 
At April 9, 2010 at 3:28:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

To April 7, 2010 4:56:00 PM EDT Post:
PP should be refundable according to their press release from August 18, 2006
"Under the Premium Processing Service, USCIS guarantees petitioners that, for a $1,000 processing fee, it will issue either an approval notice, or where appropriate, a notice of intent to deny, a request for evidence or open an investigation for fraud or misrepresentation, within 15 calendar days of receipt. If
(more) www.uscis.gov
the petition is not processed within 15 calendar days, USCIS will refund the $1,000 fee and continue to process the request as part of the Premium Processing Service."

 
At April 12, 2010 at 11:22:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

i like the effort of uscis to improve but as long the left hand still doesn t know what the right is doing there is no improvement and as long customer service can not look up a specific file or case there are not realy helpfull either there is a lot improvement nessesary to get things going
and maybe it s just the people who work at uscis and take the job just not so serious as they should

 
At April 13, 2010 at 11:59:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think that the backlog for the employment based visas is only a way of keep the business from us, the poor people who only work, invest and make contributions. By making us wait so long for a visa number, we need to keep renewing are travel and work authorization documents every year, let alone our driving license, and thus....more money for the government. These documents cost a lot of money, and then you don't even get a good treatment when you travel with these documents.
I'm really frustrated with this uncertainty, it makes you feel as if you are doing something wrong, never knowing when this situation is going to change. You feel more confident for illegal immigrants, than for us who have education and jobs, and have contributed to US Schools and paid our taxes every year. It's really something that I can't understand.
I started my greencard application with my parents when I was 19 years old. Then September 11 came and everything slowed down. I turned 21 years old and then I was on my own. They got their greencard. I then re-applied with my own sponsor 3 years later. Today, I'm 28 and I'm still waiting for my greencard because of the backlog. Have had 3 parole renewals since then, and all I have is uncertainty.

 
At April 16, 2010 at 3:03:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

To Anonymous from April 13th post. Even though you turned 21 later down the road, given that you were 19 at the time of petition you should have been able to get your GC along with rest of your family [even though you had turned 21 by that time]. Someone messed up somewhere. Anyways, it can still be salvaged. Talk to a lawyer, it should be an easy fix.Be careful, and choose a reputable one. There are many shady ones out there.
Good luck.

 
At April 21, 2010 at 9:02:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is a great Idea but wonder if anyone is actually reading it. I think that the question is, why are applicants treated like criminals, when all they are trying to do is work within the law. Lack of compasion and communication is one problem and the amount of time USCIS are taking is another, its almost as if its a case of take the money and make em wait. People have their lives on hold and it seems that no one at USCIS cares.

 
At April 21, 2010 at 10:10:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

We are here on E2 and have been for 6 years, my children have flourished since we have been in the States, my son skipping a grade in his Jr years and an honor student. But for what @ 21 he will be deported as an adult in his own right and unable to stay on our E2 visa. Why cant the children be issued with their own GC? It is not their fault or choice to be here, so why are they punished.

 
At April 25, 2010 at 8:53:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

To Anonymus from April 16th post. I have a very good lawyer that's handling my case. The thing is that the I-140 should have been approved before I turned 21, in order to be able to stay with my family's case and get the GC with them. As only the first step (Labor Certification) was approved, I wasn't able to keep on with them.
Thanks for the advice anyways, but I've done my homework thoroughly...believe me.

 
At April 27, 2010 at 10:37:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here is an issue, when people have to renew their E2 visa they have to renew out of the states. This causes great strains on businesses and people. The lost revenue to the US is astounding. Flights back to home countries, hotels etc. When a renewal as they used to be in the USA would be financially a better choice surely? Keeping those $$$$ in the USA and not sending it abroad!

 
At April 30, 2010 at 12:12:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon from April 25th. Just curious: How much time did you have between LC approval and you turning 21?

 
At April 30, 2010 at 1:27:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

We are in this country for the last 12 years and waiting for the employment based green card to come through. Like us, there are more than 150k waiting for the green card. We have all the credentials ranging from MBA, MS from the top 10 university and have 16+ years of exp but we are stuck, stuck and do not know what to do. Life has become a waste because of this back log. Please do something to get us all out of this backlog mess. We are sure that USCIS is also frustrated with this mess. Do something today. Remember "Justice Delayed is Justice Denied"

 
At May 2, 2010 at 8:29:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

This Beacon blog is good first step for USCIS to allow people to blog things related not the law but the internal procedure and behavior of the USCIS. With the hope that USCIS can learn from some of these postings and make improvements.
I'll like to know the appropriate steps to follow when USCIS sends you a notice and it is lost. In my case I received the automated email from USCIS informing me a notice was sent to requesting additional information for my application. 15 days later I did not receive the notice and the post office office told me that it was sent it has been lost. I then sent an express mail envelope with a tracking number through express mail so USCIS can resend me the notice. The express mail was received the next day but 5 days later USCIS has not resend me the notice. I called the NBC and they gave me a case number to document the fact that I did not receive the notice but ask me to call back in 45 days. This does not make sense since in general the notice requests the information within 30 days and the agent may reject my application.
I'll like to know what is USCIS internal procedure for lost notice.
If there is none, I suggest that with the IT and internet access at home and public library USCIS must:
1- Provide electronic access of the notice which will reduce mailing and printing costs by creating a database that will be managed by NBC and only keep data for 10 days.
2- It will be the responsibility of the applicant to print the notice within 10 days after they receive the email notification.
2- If a database can not be developed, email the notice to the people that are already linked to receive emails from USCIS
3- If costs is an issue because of limited budget, charge additional costs to those who want to receive electronic copy of notices.
4- Fees paid to receive notices by email will be used to pay for the database to keep the notice or printers to scan and send notice.

I'm sure applicant will not mind paying additional fees to receive their notice promptly and reduce stress induced from lost mails or mailing delays.

Hope to get an answer from this posting.

 
At May 2, 2010 at 4:05:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I130 spouse sponsoring long waiting separating families. I agree with other postings that USCIS should should not separate families. Although USCIS does not issue visas as stated in the vision statement, USCIS should quckly approve the I130 application so the DOS can issue visas. It does not make sense for USCIS to take 5 years to approve a I130. The early the approval is done the quicker it can transfer the case to DOS and people will be more frustrated to DOS if need be.
The Legal immigrants with GC should not be separated from their spouse and their spouse should be given a temporary visas to join them in the US while they are waiting in the process if the LPR
1- Work, pay taxes and contribute to social security
2- Own a house and have other investments in the US
2- Sign a document that their spouse will not get any assistance from the government.
More permanent residents that applied for I-130 for their spouse should post more comments

 
At May 4, 2010 at 8:52:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sir,

Due to bad economic situatons so many people lost jobs with their GC sponsoring company and had to trransfer their H1B to another employer.During this process so many people lost their GC priority date.this is beacuse either they are not able to apply for I140 or their I140 was denied as the companies were not doing well during the bad economy.As the VISA dates are backlogged to all the way 2001 and 2004 the porting of priority date is very important.

Is there any way USCIS can consider importing priority date without I140 approval in an exradinory conditions- -Like if the person waited for I140 approval for atleast one year before the company is closed -or if the Labor is not appproved for more than 3 years before the company is closed --some thing on those lines.

 
At May 20, 2010 at 10:49:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

My comment is on the explanation given for the fee for the I-90, Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card. In the introductory web pages -not the Form I-90 itself- it says the fee is $290. Then it adds that $80 biometric fee may be included. This is not clear. We don't know if the $80 is in the $290 or what. Not sure about this -and afraid that the internet service may be interrupted- I went to the form itself where it says that the total fee is $370. This is clearer. Conclusion: the fee stated here and elsewhere should be one and the same to save time and expense. Thank you.

 
At May 20, 2010 at 4:32:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I really don't understand the INA 212 (a)(3)(B) provision under which many green card petitions (including mine) is being held in abeyance. For a starter, I have never ever belonged to any radical/terrorist group, have never killed anyone, never associated with or provide material support to any such groups. So I don't understand when I am told my application is being held in abeyance as "you appear inadmissible under 212 (a)(3)(B).

Does it have anything to do with the disorderly conduct conviction I had have on my record from 5 years ago (since it stem from a domestic dispute I had with my ex-wife)?

Somebody, please help explain this; I am becoming really scared now.

 
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