An I-797 approval notice is a receipt letter issued by USCIS once they receive your Visa application. This constitutes only a form of communication with you (as the candidate) and usually informs you about the progress of your Visa application/status (immigrant or nonimmigrant categories).

The I-797 approval notice doesn’t stand on its own–it’s not a visa and it doesn’t issue any benefit but has important information inside about your case. Despite being called a form, it’s a simple notice and not a form you have to fill out with your data.

There are various I-797 approval notice categories having different purposes.

Seven I-797 Forms

I-797 Notice of Action: Given when an application/request is validated and approved. This form has the receipt number comprising of 13 digits, through which you can track your case status. Applicants who get this form can continue their stay in the U.S by the date stated on the form.

I-797A. Given to an applicant as a replacement for Form I-94. Form I-94 is also referred to as the Arrival-Departure Record and it is issued to foreigners visiting the U.S. Admission specific information like the date of entry, the class of entry and the admission expiry date are listed on the form.

I-797B. Given to state approval of a foreign worker application. The applicants submit their Form I-140, which is referred to as the Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker. The bottom section of the form comprises of some important details about the application.

I-797C. A multi-purpose notice issued to confirm the receipt of payments, rejection of applications, transfer of documentation, request for fingerprint biometrics, arrangement of an appointment/interview, and reopened cases depending on the situation.

I-797D. This type of form is usually supported with a benefit card, which could be in the form of a green card or another important document.

I-797E. Given to request additional documentation and evidence from the candidate if the previous documentation was insufficient or the application form wasn’t filled completely. It is important that candidates send additional documentation by the deadline given by USCIS and adhere to the specific instructions.

I-797F (Transportation Letter). Granted to allow applicants to travel overseas. This form is issued when an individual is traveling to the U.S from abroad, in case they lost their green cards while being abroad.

Seven I-797 Forms

Hiring an Immigration lawyer in Los Angeles and Immigration in LA

As each form is different, it would be wise to pay attention to the instructions and the dates given to you–failure to do so may negatively affect the status of your progress. Since the process may be confusing especially if you are requested to submit additional documentation, it would be wise to hire an immigration lawyer in your area e.g immigration lawyer in Los Angeles and consult the authorities at immigration in Los Angeles, CA. They have the means and experience to help solve your queries regarding your Visa application process and make sure that you fulfill the eligibility criteria as well as submit proper documentation.