Officials announced Friday that the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (“USCIS”) will begin requiring in-person interviews for all employment-based applicants seeking permanent resident status, or, a green card. This announcement is a continuation of President Trump’s “extreme vetting” initiative, and is to take effect starting October 1, 2017.
In-person interviews are a part of the permanent resident process, but have long been waived for employment-based applicants. Permanent Residence is a process that takes at least 18-24 months for most employment-based applicants and involves detailed background checks through over 50 federal agencies. This new mandate on an already-overworked USCIS means that the permanent residence process for employment-based cases will likely slow down significantly.
It is too early to fully understand the impact of this announcement and SPS Immigration will continue to post updates as appropriate. If you have questions on how this change in policy might impact you, please contact SPS Immigration.