The Covid pandemic has caused severe processing delays at USCIS. While immigrants continue to submit their paperwork timely, the receipt notices that come as an acknowledgement from USCIS are taking too long to arrive. One such receipt notice that is severely impacted is the Form I-797, Notice of Action. Currently, USCIS is taking close to 11 months to issue the receipt notices to applicants.
Taking this into consideration, USCIS has extended the time that these receipt notices can be used to show evidence of status from 18 months to 24 months.
Green card holders welcome this significant extension since this receipt notice is often used as proof of status for work, school, or when traveling abroad when their conditional green card has expired. With the notice validity going from 18 months to 24 months, conditional permanent residents now have an additional six months to work on a valid resident status in the US.
What Is Form I-797, Receipt Notice?
A receipt notice acts as an acknowledgement form issued by USCIS to indicate that your immigrant form has been received and its processing has begun. A receipt notice also serves as an evidence of valid status and extension to your conditional residence for a year.
How Can You Use Receipt Notices After September 2021
Starting Sept. 4, 2021, USCIS is extending the time that receipt notices can be used to show evidence of status from 18 months to 24 months.
Going forward, conditional permanent residents can use their receipt notices as evidence of continued status for up to 24 months past the expiration date on their Green Card. They are expected to present this along with their green card, officially known as Form I-551, Permanent Resident Card.
Eligibility: This is for petitioners who properly file Form I-751, Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence, or Form I-829, Petition by Investor to Remove Conditions on Permanent Resident Status.
This extension is applicable for those conditional permanent residents who have their green card cases pending with USCIS.
Important: Those conditional permanent residents who have filed their Form I-751 or Form I-829 before September 4, 2021 will receive new receipt notices from USCIS. The validity on these receipt notices will be for 24 months after the expiration of their green cards and therefore, serve as evidence of continued status.