FOIA / Privacy Act Overview

Multi-track Processing:

USCIS uses a 3-track system to process FOIA requests.

  • Track 1 is for less complex cases in which a requester needs only one or only a few specific documents from the file.
  • Track 2 is for more complex cases. Examples of a complex case include requesting a complete copy of a file, requests from the news media, or special interest groups. If we receive a request for specific documents which implies most of the file (for instance, “the asylum application and all supporting documents,”) we will assign the request to the complex track.
  • Track 3 is an accelerated track for cases involving individuals who are to appear before an immigration judge. In order to receive Track 3 priority processing, you must include one of the following documents with the FOIA request:
    • Form I-862, Notice to Appear, documenting a future scheduled date of the subject’s hearing before the immigration judge;
    • Form I-122, Order to Show Cause, documenting a future scheduled date of the subject’s hearing before the immigration judge;
    • Form I-863, Notice of Referral to Immigration Judge; or
    • A written notice of continuation of a future scheduled hearing before the immigration judge.

If you have any questions concerning your pending FOIA/PA request, please:

  • Call the USCIS Contact Center at 1-800-375-5283 or TTY 800-767-1833
  • Fax questions to the National Records Center at (802) 860-6908 or (816) 350-5785
  • E-mail your questions to

Congressional inquiries may be sent to

Please note that the National Records Center can help you with matters concerning your FOIA/PA request, but cannot help you concerning any pending Applications or Petitions or any other type of immigration matter.

Disputing Cases

The Office of Government Information Services (OGIS), within the National Archives and Records Administration, offers mediation services to resolve disputes between persons making FOIA requests and federal agencies; reviews agency policies, procedures and compliance with FOIA; and submits recommendations to Congress and the president to improve the administration of FOIA.

As the FOIA ombudsman, OGIS provides information, channels communication between requesters and agencies, and handles complaints in an effort to make FOIA work better for the entire FOIA community. In addition, OGIS provides training and issues advisory opinions if mediation fails to resolve disputes.

If you would like the assistance of OGIS or more information, please visit Office of Government Information Services.

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