USCIS online system to undergo maintenance from June 6-7

June 5, 2020 by Prabalta Rijal

USCIS today announced that it will be will conducting system maintenance to the Contact Relationship Interface System (CRIS) on Saturday, June 6th, at 11:00 p.m. through Sunday, June 7th, at 6:00 a.m. Eastern Time.

The government organization warns that during this time users may experience technical difficulties with one or more of the following online tools:

  • Check My Case Status
  • e-Request
  • Change of Address online
  • Check Case Processing Times
  • Civil Surgeon Locator
  • Office Locator
  • File Online
  • myUSCIS online account

Meanwhile, as the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services opened its doors to some domestic offices and resumed non-emergency public services from June 4. Although it has begun a few of this they have requested individuals who are not feeling well to cancel and reschedule their appointments for a later date. 

Similarly, the USCIS has also published its guidelines for entering their facilities:

  • Visitors may not enter a USCIS facility if they:
    • Have any symptoms of COVID-19, including cough, fever or difficulty breathing;
    • Have been in close contact with anyone known or suspected to have COVID-19 in the last 14 days; or
    • Have been individually directed to self-quarantine or self-isolate by a health care provider or public health official within the last 14 days.
  • Visitors may not enter the facility more than 15 minutes before their appointment (30 minutes for naturalization ceremonies).
  • Hand sanitizer will be provided for visitors at entry points. 
  • Members of the public must wear facial coverings that cover both the mouth and nose when entering facilities. Visitors may be directed to briefly remove their face covering to confirm identity or take their photograph. There will be markings and physical barriers in the facility; visitors should pay close attention to these signs to ensure they follow social distancing guidelines.
  • Individuals are encouraged to bring their own black or blue ink pens.

During this week we saw the following USCIS services resuming work: 

Asylum Offices

USCIS asylum offices began the automatic rescheduling of asylum interviews that were canceled during the temporary closures. Asylum applicants this week began receiving new interview notices with the new time, date, and location for the interview and information about safety precautions.

In accordance with social distancing guidelines, and due to the length of asylum interviews, asylum offices expect to conduct video-facilitated asylum interviews, where the applicants sit in one room and the interviewing officer sits in another room. Asylum offices will use available technology, including mobile devices provided by the agency, to ensure that the officer, applicant, interpreter, and representative can fully and safely participate in the interview while maintaining social distancing.

For affirmative asylum interviews, applicants must bring all immediate family members listed as dependents on the application and an interpreter, if the applicant does not speak English. Additionally, a representative, witness, individual providing disability accommodations or “trusted adult” if an applicant is a minor, may attend the interview.

For non-detained credible or reasonable fear interviews, individuals must bring any family members listed on the interview notice. Representatives may attend credible and reasonable fear interviews but are encouraged to participate telephonically. USCIS will provide contracted, professional interpreters for credible and reasonable fear interviews.

 

Application Support Centers

USCIS also began rescheduling any necessary ASC appointments that were canceled due to the temporary office closure. According to USCIS, all Individuals will receive a new appointment letter in the mail with specific safety requirements. Individuals who appear at a date or time other than what is listed on the ASC appointment notice may encounter significant processing delays, except for military members. 

Naturalization Ceremonies

USCIS has started sending notices to applicants to reschedule postponed naturalization ceremonies. The ceremonies may be shorter to limit exposure to those in attendance. Instead of playing videos during naturalization ceremonies, attendees will receive a flyer with information and links directing them to the videos on the USCIS website. Under the shortened format, all legally required portions of the ceremony will take place.

Attendance is limited to the naturalization candidate and individuals assisting disabled persons.

Interviews and Appointments

Interview notices to applicants and petitioners with previously scheduled appointments and interviews have also been sent to expedite the process. Those attending appointments should follow the safety guidelines outlined below.

Those individuals who had other appointments must reschedule through the USCIS Contact Center once field offices are open to the public. Please check our office closure page to see if your respective office has been reopened before calling the Contact Center.  

Visitors are limited to the applicant, one representative, one family member, and one individual providing disability accommodations. The applicant should arrange to have their interpreter available by phone. 

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