By Dev B. Viswanath, Esq.
USCIS Announces Lockbox Filing Flexibilities
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will offer filing flexibilities to provide relief to certain applicants and petitioners impacted by delays at a USCIS lockbox. These flexibilities only apply to benefit requests submitted to a USCIS lockbox and not to USCIS service centers or field offices.
The following temporary flexibilities are effective for 60 days from June 10 until Aug. 9, 2021:
- If you submitted a benefit request to a USCIS lockbox between Oct. 1, 2020, and April 1, 2021, and that request was rejected during that time frame solely due to a filing fee payment that expired while the benefit request was awaiting processing, you may resubmit the request with a new fee payment. If USCIS concurs that it has rejected the benefit request because of the delay, USCIS will deem the request to have been received on the initial filing date it was first received and waive the $30 dishonored check fee.
- USCIS will allow applicants and petitioners to submit documentation with a benefit request resubmission demonstrating that because of the time that elapsed between when a benefit request was originally submitted to a USCIS lockbox and when USCIS rejected it, an applicant, co-applicant, beneficiary or derivative has reached an age that makes them no longer eligible to file for the benefit requested. If USCIS agrees that the delayed rejection caused the person to be ineligible due to age, USCIS will accept the request and deem it to have been received on the date the initial benefit request was received. This flexibility does not apply to Form N-600K, Application for Citizenship and Issuance of Certificate Under Section 322.
Applicants and petitioners can contact USCIS to verify previously filed benefit requests have not been rejected in error. If USCIS concurs, the agency may allow applicants and petitioners to resubmit an erroneously rejected benefit request and deem the benefit request to have been received on the date the initial benefit request was first received at a USCIS lockbox.
Vermont Service Center Address Change
Effective June 14, 2021, the Vermont Service Center will no longer receive any incoming mail at the St. Albans, VT facility, which is being decommissioned. Mail sent to the previous addresses will be forwarded for one year, but any mail sent to the previous addresses after June 2022 may be returned to the sender by the United States Postal Service or the courier service used. For any information related to these addresses please feel free to contact our office or refer to the USCIS website.
For any information or to discuss how these changes may impact your matter please do contact an experienced US Immigration Attorney.