Petitioners applying for visas or other immigration-related issues, as well as their representatives, often need access to updates about U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) case status. For example, if you apply for a visa, you will want to know as soon as possible whether your application has been rejected, accepted, or whether there will be a delay. This is important so that you can start planning the next phase of your life or the next phase of your application. If you are an employer submitting visa applications for employees, case status can affect your company profits, so knowing about status updates sooner can be a great benefit.
Luckily, the USCIS does make it possible to check case status online. In fact, representatives and applicants with multiple applications before the USCIS can sign up for an account (at this page: https://egov.uscis.gov/cris/jsps/selectusertype.jsp) to track the status of immigration cases together. As well, applicants and representatives can sign up with the USCIS to receive automated USCIS case updates by email. A new USCIS program can even send these updates by text message, ensuring that applicants and their representatives get notifications of status changes at once. Any applicant with a mobile phone number in the US can sign up for this service. While this can mean an additional cost, depending on the applicant’s messaging rate plan and telephone provider, it does provide a very convenient way to receive updates about the status of an immigration case.
You do not even need to sign up for automatic notices to check your case status online. When you submit a petition to the USCIS, you will receive a “receipt notice” in the mail, detailing your request. This notice will also contain instructions about how to check the status of your immigration case. You can do this by contacting the USCIS. If you are comfortable with computers, you can also visit the USCIS website with your receipt notice in hand and follow the step-by-step directions for checking your USCIS case status.
Whether you sign up for automatic notices or check the status of your immigration case through the USCIS or their website, it is important to check case status regularly. Even if you are not very familiar with computers, the USCIS makes it fairly simple to check your status. This is important to do, as it gives you advance notice of any problems, delays, or issues which need to be addressed. This allows you time to seek help or to find an immigration attorney if you need one.