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New Customer Identity Verification to begin at USCIS Field Offices

Starting on May 6, 2013, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will implement Customer Identity Verification (CIV) in its field offices. This new procedure will require individuals to submit biometric data, fingerprints, and photographs, when appearing at USCIS offices for interviews or to receive evidence of an immigration benefit.

Under this new process, USCIS staff will take two fingerprints and a photograph of the individual and input the information into the U.S. Visitor and Immigrant Status Indicator Technology’s (US-VISIT) Secondary Inspections Tool. US-VISIT also links databases associated with border inspections and security.  After identity verification is satisfactorily completed, individuals will proceed to their interview or be issued their immigration documents.

Individuals appearing at USCIS field offices for an interview or to be issued evidence of an immigration benefit (such as temporary travel documents, parole authorizations, and temporary I-551 stamps on passports or I-94 cards to evidence lawful permanent resident status) will be required to submit biometric data under CIV. An individual coming to the USCIS field office for other purposes, such as an Infopass appointment or guest of an applicant or petitioner, are exempt from CIV.

The requirement of submitting biometrics data is nothing new since USCIS already requires applicants and petitioners to visit one of their Application Support Centers during the processing of their application or petition to submit their fingerprints and photograph. CIV is another layer of protection that will allow USCIS to re-verify the person’s identity. As USCIS has recently stated, “CIV will help to both defend against threats to national security and protect customers from identity fraud by enhancing the agency’s ability to verify identity.”

Berardi Immigration Law is committed to providing you with the most up-to-date information regarding immigration news, policies, and changes. Therefore, if you have any questions about the new CIV implementation or regarding any immigration services, please contact our attorneys today.