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USCIS Offers Flexibility for Applications Impacted By Lockbox Delays

By July 2, 2021COVID-19, News
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USCIS has announced that it is offering temporary flexibility for certain benefit requests submitted at lockboxes. Lockbox facilities are centralized locations that USCIS has to receive a variety of applications. These facilities allow USCIS to receive forms quickly and process payments efficiently and securely.

Since the pandemic, lockboxes have experience significant delays, some causing more than a month wait for application fees to be processed and even longer for receipts to be mailed out. As a response to the delay, USCIS is offering some flexibility for applications filed at these locations. Please note that this does not apply to applications that are filed at USCIS service centers or field officers. According to USCIS, the following flexibilities are effective from June 10 until August 9, 2021:

Rejection Due to Filing Fee Payment:

If you submitted a benefit request to a USCIS lockbox between October 1, 2020, and April 1, 2021, and that request was rejected during that timeframe solely due to a filing fee payment that expired while the benefit request was awaiting processing, you may resubmit the request with a new fee payment.

If USCIS concurs that it rejected the benefit request because of its delay, USCIS will deem the request to have been received on the initial filing date it was first received and waive the $30 dishonored check fee.

Ineligible for Benefit Due to Age:

USCIS will allow applicants and petitioners to submit documentation with a benefit request resubmission demonstrating that because of the time that elapsed between when a benefit request was originally submitted to a USCIS lockbox and when USCIS rejected it, an applicant, co-applicant, beneficiary or derivative has reached an age that makes them no longer eligible to file for the benefit requested.

If USCIS agrees that the delayed rejection caused the person to be ineligible due to age, USCIS will accept the request and deem it to have been received on the date the initial benefit request was received. This flexibility does not apply to Form N-600K, Application for Citizenship and Issuance of Certificate Under Section 322. To learn more about aging out, please click here.

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