Immigration Update: Suspension of In-Person Services at US Immigration Offices & US Embassies Worldwide
In an effort to help slow the spread of COVID-19, both U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and U.S. Department of State (US DOS) announced that in-person services were being temporarily suspended.
USCIS Suspension of Services
USCIS suspended in-person services at its field offices, asylum offices, and Application Support Centers as of March 18, 2020. The suspension is currently effective until April 1, 2020. The suspension means individuals who had an interview or in-person appointment scheduled via InfoPass will be cancelled and rescheduled once in-person office services resume.
More specifically, appointments will be handled as follows:
- USCIS field offices will send notices to applicants and petitioners with scheduled appointments and naturalization ceremonies affected by this closure.
- USCIS asylum offices will send interview cancellation notices and automatically reschedule asylum interviews. When the interview is rescheduled, asylum applicants will receive a new interview notice with the new time, date and location of the interview.
- When USCIS resumes normal operations, USCIS will automatically reschedule Application Support Center appointments that were canceled because of the office closure.
- Individuals who had InfoPass or other appointments must reschedule through the USCIS Contact Center once field offices are open to the public again.
For more information about USCIS's response to the COVID-19 pandemic, please visit their website at: https://www.uscis.gov/about-us/uscis-office-closings
US DOS Suspension of Routine Visa Services
US DOS suspended routine visa services in most countries worldwide as of March 18, 2020. This means all routine immigrant and nonimmigrant visa appointments have been cancelled. US DOS indicated that embassies will resume visa services as soon as possible but do not have a specific date to provide at this time. Additionally, MRV fees remain valid for a visa appointment in the country where it was paid within one year of the date of payment.
Additional information on the Department of State response to COVID-19 can be found on their website at: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/traveladvisories/ea/covid-19-information.html
MVA will continue to monitor closures of USCIS offices and U.S. consulates/embassies around the world provide updates as it affects our clients.