Often in the news, we see stories about undocumented applicants being arrested while attending their USCIS interviews. A lot of applicants wanting to apply for immigration benefits are worried about similar incidents happening to them. We will discuss the USCIS policies regarding to the arrest of an alien during the interview process below:
General rule - not arresting the alien even though he/she may be in the U.S. illegally
Per USCIS policy, as a general rule, any alien who appears for an interview before an USCIS officer in connection with an application or petition seeking benefits under the INA shall not be arrested during the course of the interview, even though the alien may be in the United States illegally. If the alien is ineligible for the benefit being sought, the interviewing officer should advise the alien that he or she will receive a written decision on the application or petition by mail. The officer may (at the officer’s discretion) also verbally advise the alien of the anticipated nature of the decision, what the alien’s available options might be (e.g. appeal the decision, renew the application in proceedings before the Immigration Court, etc.), when the officer anticipates the decision will be mailed, etc. The alien will then be allowed to depart from the office.
Note: This general rule applies only to adjudication scenarios. It does not apply to inspection scenarios (at ports of entry or during proceedings involving deferred inspection or completion of parole) or enforcement scenarios.
Exceptions to the general rule
In some cases, an illegal alien’s actions or situation may be so egregious as to justify making an exception to the general rule that those who appear voluntarily for an interview should not be arrested during the course of that interview. Such actions and situations include, but are not limited to:
USCIS published the national average processing times for select forms based on all USCIS office for FY2014 through FY2018, as well as for FY2019 up to October 31, 2018.
What Our Clients Are Saying
"Sabrina was always very responsive when I called her or sent her email. She is always there to help me. She is very resourceful, and gave me advice on more than just my case. She helped me to get through the most difficult time in my life. I would highly recommend her."- Natalie