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USCIS Change of Address – Form AR-11

On 06.27.13 | In USCIS Blog, By USCIS Info

USCIS change of address

Section 265 of the Immigration and Nationality Act requires non-citizens of the United States to report a change in address within 10 days of moving. The only persons exempt from this rule are:

  1. “A” visa holders – Diplomats
  2. “G” visa holders – official representatives of international organizations.
  3. Certain nonimmigrants without a visa, who have been in the U.S. for less than 30 days and whose stay will not exceed 30 days.

Instances of willful failure to notify the USCIS of a change of address can lead to conviction with imprisonment and/or fines. Persons may also be removed or deported and future immigration benefits may not be approved.

Reporting Change of Address with the USCIS

A change of address is reported to the USCIS by filing a Form AR-11, Change of Address. The form may be mailed to the USCIS or it can be filed online at the USCIS website. Persons subject to Special Registration requirements need to file the AR-11 SR within 10 days of moving.

U.S. Citizens

Most U.S. citizens do not have to report a change in address by filing Form AR-11.

U.S. citizens with a pending USCIS case:

U.S. citizens who have filed an application/petition and are still awaiting a decision from the USCIS will have to inform the USCIS if they change their address.  They need to use the Online Change of Address page or call 1-800-375-5283 to have the address changed on the pending application or petition.

Other U.S. citizens who need to report a change of address:

U.S. citizens who do not have any petition or application pending, but who have previously sponsored a person for legal permanent residency will have to file form I-865 within 30 days of moving to register their new address with the USCIS.

If a U.S. citizen has an approved petition for a relative and if the citizen or the relative is moving, the U.S. citizen has to follow the instructions on the approval notice regarding who should be notified and  how to report the change in address.

U.S. citizens having an appeal pending with the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) need to report a change in address within 5 days of moving using the Form EOIR 33/BIA. This form can be found on the Department of Justice website.

Lawful Permanent Residents

All permanent residents are required to notify the USCIS of a change in address within 10 days of moving, by completing Form AR-11. The form may be mailed to the USCIS or can be filed electronically on their website.

Lawful Permanent Residents with a pending USCIS case:

Permanent residents who have applications or petitions with a USCIS decision pending will have to inform USCIS about any change in address within 10 days, using a USCIS change of address form, so that USCIS can send notices to the current address.  Follow these steps:

  1. File AR-11 by mail or electronically
  2. Use the Online Change of Address page or call 1-800-375-5283 to have the address changed on the pending application or petition.

Both the steps 1 and 2 can be completed together if the applicant chooses to file Form AR-11 electronically. This is a more convenient method. If mailing a paper AR-11 form, the applicant has to either call or go to the Online Change of Address page on the USCIS website to update the address on any pending application or petition. A paper Form AR-11 is not required if filed electronically.

Lawful Permanent Residents with additional requirements to report an address change:

Permanent residents who have financially sponsored a person for immigration by filing Form I-864 need to file Form AR-11 within 10 days of moving and in addition to this they have to file Form I-865 within 30 days of moving.

If a permanent resident has an approved petition for a relative and if he/she or the relative is moving, he/she has to follow the instructions on the approval notice regarding who should be notified and  how to report the change in address.

Permanent residents who have been placed in court proceedings like deportation, removal, etc., need and who are changing address need to inform the Department of Justice within 5 days of moving. The form to be used is the Form EOIR 33/IC.  Those who have an appeal pending with the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) need to inform the BIA within 5 days of moving using Form EOIR 33/BIA. These forms are available at the Department of Justice website.  Such persons also need to separately file the Form AR-11 electronically or by mail.

Other Persons

All other persons other than U.S. citizens, lawful permanent residents and the 3 exempt categories (mentioned at the top of the page) will have to notify a change of address using the USCIS change of address Form AR-11. This form can be filed electronically or by mail.  Those who have an application or petition pending a decision from the USCIS, have to update the address on the pending applications or petitions either by using the Online Change of Address page or calling 1-800-375-5283.

Information to be provided when updating address on pending applications/petitions:

When a person calls the USCIS or uses the Online Change of Address page to update an address on any pending petition or application, he/she needs to provide certain information.

U.S. Citizens, Lawful Permanent Residents and Others need to have the following information handy

  1. Receipt number (Can be found on the receipt notice or any other notice sent by the USCIS.)
  2. Old address
  3. New address
  4. Name of the beneficiary/beneficiaries for whom you have filed the application/petition
  5. Biographic information of the beneficiary/beneficiaries.

Lawful Permanent Residents and Others also need to have the following information handy:

  1. Date of entry into the U.S. (An approximate date can be entered if exact date is not available.)
  2.  Last Port of Entry into the U.S. – land, sea or air.

Individuals who electronically file the AR-11 can complete the form and then print it out for their records. USCIS advices applicants to print, date and sign in permanent ink, and keep the paper form for their records.

There is no filing fee for the AR-11 or AR-11 SR.

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USCIS Case Status

On 06.27.13 | In USCIS Blog, By USCIS Info

Department-of-HomelandU. S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) maintains a website that allows individuals to check the status of their USCIS case status online. The site monitors petitions and applications by their receipt numbers and tracks them as they move through up to nine different stages —the stages involved depend on the form submitted and the petitions or applications being made.

Applicants who visit the USCIS website to check their USCIS case status online will be told that their application is in one of the following nine stages:

Acceptance: This is the first step in processing a request, when USCIS has accepted the paperwork submitted by the applicant but will not necessarily process and approve it. In this stage, documents can be rejected if they are not properly filed, not signed by the applicant, or not accompanied by the necessary fees.

Initial Review: This is the step where USCIS determines whether there are national security issues involved with the applicant’s request and whether there are any indications of possible fraud in the provided information. It is also when background checks are begun and biometric appointments are scheduled, if necessary.

Request for Evidence: Petitions or applications go through this step when USCIS decides that the submitted paperwork is lacking supporting evidence. The applicant may be asked to provide initial evidence that should have been submitted with the form, or additional evidence to show why a petition or application should be approved.

Request for Evidence Response Review: In this step, USCIS examines the evidence provided after a request for evidence was made in the previous step.

Testing and Interview: This is the point where USCIS schedules an interview and administers the English and civics tests required for citizenship (in cases where an individual has applied for naturalization). USCIS may not require an interview depending on the type of form submitted.

Decision: In this step, USCIS makes the formal decision to approve or deny a request.

Post Decision Activity: This is when USCIS sends notification to the Department of State or National Visa Center showing that it has approved an application or decision. Alternatively, this is the point where USCIS processes an appeal or motion to reopen or reconsider an individual’s case.

Oath Ceremony: For naturalized U.S. citizens, this is the step where they receive their certificate of citizenship and take the oath of citizenship.

Card/Document Production: At this point, USCIS will issue permanent resident cards (also known as “green cards”) or documents such as travel documents or naturalization certificates. It is the final step in the process.

Not all applications will need to go through all nine stages of the approval process, but individuals checking their USCIS case status online can sign up to receive e-mail alerts to let them know when their case status has been updated.

To check the status of your own USCIS case status online, please visit https://egov.uscis.gov/cris/Dashboard.do

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