USCIS recommendations to avoid delays in your immigration procedures

In order not to delay an immigration application or petition in the US, it is convenient not to make mistakes when presenting the documents and evidence required by the USCIS authorities.

In order not to delay an immigration application or petition in the US, it is convenient not to make mistakes when presenting the documents and evidence required by the USCIS authorities.


Although the incorporation of the main immigration agencies to the latest technology favors all immigrants, it is vital not to make certain seemingly insignificant mistakes that can greatly delay your application or immigration process.

Now the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) scans most of the documents sent to process immigrant petitions, documents that are uploaded to different electronic database systems.

Given the increase in applications, immigration officials make recommendations to avoid delays and at the same time improve efficiency when scanning the documents required by the authorities.

Read more: Changes are coming to the dreaded test to obtain American citizenship. This is the USCIS plan

If you are going to send documents to USCIS, do not do these actions

Punch, staple, use paper clips such as paper clips, clamps, or any other object that is used to hold a stack of papers.

Do not attach the documents to each other.

Also do not include photos or documents smaller than 4×6 inches for evidentiary purposes to prove a fact. Instead, you can provide photocopies of these articles instead.

There is one exception: When USCIS requests a passport photo with the form.

No need to fold documents.

Read more: Who benefits from the new change in work permits in the US?

USCIS does not accept certain electronic materials or items

Do not include anything that contains electronic chips and batteries, such as musical greeting cards.

Neither are any non-paper materials, such as cassette tapes, CD-ROMs, DVDs, toys, action figures, or USB sticks.

Although the authorities do not accept this type of material, they do admit photographs or photocopies of these articles.

Do not submit forms or proof documents bound in a wire, spiral, or plastic binder.

Do not send any evidence using photo albums, scrapbooks, folders, or greeting cards.

Documents with sticky notes are not allowed. It is better not to paste them into the documents.

Do not use non-separable dividers with tabs made of any type of material.

Read more: These foreigners benefit from a special ‘parole’ that allows them legal entry to the US

Forms and certificates

You do not have to print the forms on colored paper.

Unless the authorities, instructions or regulations of the form so require, do not present more than one copy of the same document or evidence. One copy is enough.

If you have been asked to submit a copy of an application or petition, always clearly mark it “COPY” at the top of each page. This is the best way to ensure that this copy will be processed as intended, otherwise it may create confusion.

Never submit original documents such as birth certificates, marriage certificates, driver’s licenses, passports, and naturalization certificates, except as required by the instructions on the form and when USCIS issues a specific request that you submit the original document.

If you avoid these actions, your application or request will be processed more quickly.

This story was originally published on January 7, 2023 9:20 a.m.

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Isabel Olmos is a Public Service reporter. At el Nuevo Herald she has written stories for Trasfondo, Locales, Revista Viernes and Galería 305, and has covered fundamental topics such as health, art, cooking and travel. She is a scriptwriter for television documentaries. She has a degree in Journalism from the CEU Universidad San Pablo in Valencia, Spain.

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