Breaking News: USCIS to Expand Interviews for All Employment-based Adjustment of Status Applicants
USCIS announced yesterday that beginning on October 1, 2017, they will begin expanding in-person interviews for applicants moving from an employment-based nonimmigrant status to Lawful Permanent Resident status through the filing of an Adjustment of Status (Form I-485) application. This change comes as part of President Trump’s Executive Order 13780, “Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States.” It is part of USCIS’s comprehensive strategy to further improve the detection and prevention of fraud and further enhance the integrity of the U.S. immigration system.
Previously, employment-based adjustment of status applicants did not require an in-person interview with USCIS officers in order for their application for permanent residency to be adjudicated. However, USCIS did have the ability to call an applicant in for an interview if they felt the need arose. USCIS notes that conducting in-person interviews will now provide USCIS officers with the opportunity to verify the information provided in an individual’s application, to discover new information that may be relevant to the adjudication process, and to determine the credibility of the individual seeking permanent resident status in the United States.
This change will likely result in over 100,000 additional in-person interviews conducted each year, which we expect will lengthen the overall processing times for green card applications. While we hope that this change will not directly affect I-140 petitions and the issuance of the employment authorization (EAD) and advance parole document, the increased interview workload could impact adjudications here and in other areas.
In yesterday’s statement, USCIS notes that it will meet the additional interview requirement through enhancements in training and technology as well as transitions in some aspects of case management.
Berardi Immigration Law is committed to ensuring that our clients will be fully prepared for these interviews. The interviews will likely review information regarding the employer, the position (including specific details such as job duties, pay, employment address, etc.), and the applicant’s credentials. The applicant should also be prepared to go over certain documents submitted with the I-140 and explain any updates or changes that may have occurred since the original submission.
We will continue to closely monitor this new USCIS policy and keep our clients informed of the most recent updates. Please contact our office if you have additional questions on how this may impact your application for permanent residence.