In response to growing pressure from stakeholders, the US Citizenship and Immigration Service (CIS) is introducing changes to the processing of Petitions for Alien Relative filed by U.S. citizens for overseas spouse and children. These delays are the cause of tremendous hardship to U.S. citizens and their non-citizen spouses and children, who have been kept apart by administrative inefficiency and a discompassionate bureaucracy.
To address the growing backlog and one-year delays, the CIS is shifting resources and transferring cases from the National Benefits Center to the other regional processing centers. With the shifting of resources, it is hoped that the CIS will substantially reduce processing times.
Backlogs in family-based processing are not only administrative annoyances; they cause emotional and financial hardship to non-citizen spouses and children with long-pending cases, compelled to live separately from their loved ones, awaiting the review, processing and approval of their cases. The CIS initiative to reduce processing times and backlogs in family-based cases will not eliminate that hardship, but it may help families to complete the green card process under more tolerable conditions.
This initiative applies to Petitions by U.S. citizens for non-citizen spouses living abroad, and for the children and stepchildren of U.S. citizens living abroad. At the Law Office of Matthew I. Hirsch, we welcome the opportunity to consult with clients on all kinds of family-based immigration. For more information on the CIS initiative or on family-based immigration, please contact us.