Rescheduling Appointments Due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19)
USCIS Updates Effect of Breaks in Continuity of Residence on Eligibility for Naturalization
Public Charge for Illinois
USCIS Updates Policy Manual for Implementation of Final Rule
What You Need to Know About the H-1B Registration Process
Buy American and Hire American: Putting American Workers First and Protecting the Interests of U.S. Workers
ALERT: Rescheduling Appointments Due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) If you become ill for any reason, regardless of whether you were exposed to COVID-19, please do not come to appointments with any USCIS office. Please follow the instructions on your appointment notice to reschedule your appointment or interview if you:
Were in China within 14 days of your appointment;
Believe that you may have been exposed to COVID-19 (even if you were not recently in China); or
Are experiencing flu-like symptoms (such as a runny nose, headache, cough, sore throat or fever).
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) issued policy guidance in the USCIS Policy Manual to address naturalization applicants’ absences from the United States of more than 6 months but less than 1 year during the statutorily required continuous residence period.
ALERT: We implemented the Inadmissibility on Public Charge Grounds final rule nationwide on Feb. 24, 2020, including in Illinois where the rule was enjoined until the Supreme Court stayed the injunction on Feb. 21, 2020. The final rule applies to applications and petitions postmarked (or submitted electronically) on or after Feb. 24, 2020. For applications and petitions sent by commercial courier (such as UPS, FedEx and DHL), the postmark date is the date reflected on the courier receipt.
The Final Rule requires applicants for adjustment of status who are subject to the public charge ground of inadmissibility and certain applicants and petitioners seeking extension of stay and change of status to report certain information related to public benefits. Due to litigation-related delays in the Final Rule’s implementation, USCIS is applying this requirement as though it refers to Feb. 24, 2020, rather than October 15, 2019. Please read all references to Oct. 15, 2019, as though they refer to Feb. 24, 2020.
USCIS will not consider, and applicants for adjustment of status do not need to report, the application for, certification or approval to receive, or receipt of certain previously excluded non-cash public benefits (such as SNAP, most forms of Medicaid, and public housing) before Feb. 24, 2020. Similarly, USCIS will not consider as a heavily weighted negative factor receipt of previously included public benefits (such as SSI and TANF) before Feb. 24, 2020, in a public charge inadmissibility determination. In addition, USCIS will not consider, and applicants and petitioners submitting applications and petitions for extension of stay and change of status do not need to report, the receipt of any public benefits received before Feb. 24, 2020.
Certain classes of aliens are exempt from the public charge ground of inadmissibility (such as refugees, asylees, certain VAWA self-petitioners, U petitioners, and T applicants) and, therefore, are not subject to the final rule. For more information about the classes of aliens who are exempt from the final rule, please see our policy manual. For more information about the final rule, see our news release, our public charge webpage, and our public charge factsheet webpage.
USCIS is implementing a new electronic H-1B registration process for the FY 2021 H-1B cap. Employers seeking to file H-1B cap-subject petitions, including for beneficiaries eligible for the advanced degree exemption, must first create an online account and then electronically register and pay the associated $10 non-refundable H-1B registration fee for each beneficiary.
USCIS will open the initial registration period for the FY 2021 cap at noon ET on March 1, 2020. The initial registration period will remain open through noon ET on March 20, 2020. Registrants and representatives may create accounts beginning Feb. 24 and register throughout the initial registration period; selections will take place after the initial registration period closes, so there is no requirement to register on March 1.
On April 18, 2017, President Trump signed the Buy American and Hire American Executive Order, which seeks to create higher wages and employment rates for U.S. workers and to protect their economic interests by rigorously enforcing and administering our immigration laws. It also directs DHS, in coordination with other agencies, to advance policies to help ensure H-1B visas are awarded to the most-skilled or highest-paid beneficiaries.
USCIS is working on a combination of rulemaking, policy memoranda, and operational changes to implement the Buy American and Hire American Executive Order. We are creating and carrying out these initiatives to protect the economic interests of U.S. workers and prevent fraud and abuse within the immigration system.
USCIS will implement the Inadmissibility on Public Charge Grounds final rule (“Final Rule”) on Feb. 24, 2020 nationwide, including in Illinois, following another judicial victory lifting the injunction in that state.
This video provides step-by-step information on how to create a USCIS online account. Once you have an account, you will be able to file forms and pay fees from your computer, phone, or tablet. You will also be able to receive status updates and communicate with us securely about forms you file online.