USCIS posts alert and creates inflated expectations over EB I-485 applications

On 01/21/2022, USCIS issued an alert which stated the following: ALERT: There are an exceptionally high number of employment-based visas available this fiscal year (October 2021 through September 2022).There are an exceptionally high number of employment-based visas available this fiscal year (October 2021 through September 2022). In partnership with the U.S. Department of State, we are...

Prevailing Wage Determinations Have Slowed Down But Still Follow FIFO

Processing time of prevailing wage determinations has slowed to about 6 months. DOL does not post avg processing time but only the submission date of the oldest application in its pipeline. Looking at its latest data, the oldest application in its queue as of December 31, 2021 is April 2021. Based on our records, requests for PWD have slowed down from 5 months to 6 months. We are currently...

Healthcare workers may request expedited processing of their pending Form I-765s (EADs)

On December 28, 2021, USCIS issued guidance allowing healthcare workers to request expedited processing of their pending I-765 EAD applications. To determine whether you are a qualifying healthcare worker, see this DHS advisory memorandum (“Healthcare / Public Health” section, pages 7-9). You should be prepared to provide evidence of your profession or current employment as a healthcare...

USCIS Temporarily Waiving 60-Day Rule For I-693 Signatures

On December 9, 2021, USCIS announced that it is temporarily waiving the requirement that the civil surgeon sign Form I-693, Report of Medical Examination and Vaccination Record, no more than 60 days before an applicant files an application for the underlying immigration benefit (such as I-485). In October 2020, many applicants could not file their I-485 applications in October due to civil...

May Need a New Medical Exam If the Civil Surgeon is No Longer Listed

This is a situation where the reviewing officer's discretion plays a significant role. USCIS has a tool on its website that lists all the civil surgeons in the US who are authorized to complete the I-693 medical exam. Applicants would go to the online tool, search for a civil surgeon near where they live, set up an appointment, and complete the medical exam. The sealed medical exam report...

Why Is My Case Taking So Long?

Related Posts: Another Chance to File I-485 after RejectionUSCIS Processing Update: H-4 / H-4 EADI-485 EB Processing UpdateExpediting a Pending I-765 EADBreaking: USCIS to Eliminate Biometrics Requirement for I-539 filers starting May 17, 2021Biometric Appt may now be Rescheduled by PhoneI-751 Processing updatesNaturalization Processing UpdatesTemporary Extension of I-693 Validity from 2 Years...

Anxious About Not Having Received a Receipt Notice? Ask Emma

As USCIS continues to grapple with backlogs and extended processing delays, the issuance of receipt notices has also be impacted with some taking 3 weeks or longer to arrive by mail. Coupled with mail delivery issues at USPS, it has now become a challenge just to get the receipt notice in hand. It is no longer easy or expected to receive the receipt notice within a few short days. Receipt...

COVID Vaccination is Now Required for USCIS Medical Exams

Update Post 09/16/2021 USCIS releases policy guidance highlighting the following: "..beginning October 1, 2021, applicants who are required to undergo the immigration medical examination must complete the COVID-19 vaccine series before the civil surgeon can complete the immigration medical examination and sign Form I-693." Original Post 08/31/2021 On August 25, 2021, the CDC announced that...

EB1a, Aliens of Extraordinary Ability (2021)

Since March of 2021, visa numbers have been current for Chinese or Indian nationals filing for green card under the employment-based first preference (EB1) category. This means that an applicant may file their green card applications (I-485) concurrently with their I-140 petition instead of waiting 3 to 10 years for visa number availability under second or third preference categories. The...