WASHINGTON –U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will begin expanding in-person interviews for certain immigration benefit applicants whose benefit, if granted, would allow them to permanently reside in the United States. This change complies with Executive Order 13780, “Protecting the Nation From Foreign Terrorist Entry Into the United States,” and is part of the agency’s comprehensive strategy to further improve the detection and prevention of fraud and further enhance the integrity of the immigration system.
Effective Oct. 1, USCIS will begin to phase in interviews for:
- Adjustment of status applications based on employment (Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status).
- Refugee/asylee relative petitions (Form I-730, Refugee/Asylee Relative Petition) for beneficiaries who are in the United States and are petitioning to join a principal asylee/refugee applicant.
Previously, applicants in these categories did not require an in-person interview with USCIS officers in order for their application for permanent residency to be adjudicated. Beyond these categories, USCIS is planning an incremental expansion of interviews to other benefit types.
“USCIS is collaborating with our federal partners to develop a uniform baseline for screening and vetting standards and procedures. Part of our USCIS strategy to support this uniform baseline is the incremental expansion of interviews for those benefit types which would provide permanent residence in the United States,” said Acting USCIS Director James W. McCament.
Conducting interviews will provide USCIS officers with the opportunity to verify the information provided in the application directly with the individual(s), discover new information that may be relevant to the adjudication, and determine the credibility of the individual(s) seeking permanent residence in the United States. USCIS will meet the additional interview requirement through enhancements in training and technology as well as transitions in some aspects of case management.
Additionally, individuals can report allegations of immigration fraud or abuse by completing ICE’s HSI Tip Form.