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Method of Delivery Matters

Written By The Shapiro Law Group on January 16, 2012

According to the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) there is a little-known practice at the Vermont Service Center for the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (the “USCIS) which can affect the processing of applications for visas and other immigration petitions.

Reportedly, the Vermont Service Center of the USCIS has its mail held at a nearby postal facility, and only picks up the mail – at most – once per day. The center also treat applications as “received” only when they pick them up at the postal facility – not when received at the address designated by the USCIS on its Website.

Thus, if you use FedEx, UPS or other delivery services that do deliveries directly to the doorstep of the Vermont Service Center, then you have a leg up on those who use the mail. That could mean a better position in “up against the clock” or “quota” filings (such as for H-1B applications) or it could mean simply faster processing.

AILA is calling for an end to this practice by the USCIS, arguing that customers should be able to rely upon timely delivery to an address designated by the USCIS as being sufficient. “Mail should not have a ‘make or break´ impact on a filing,” AILA asserted on its Website, adding that the USCIS is essentially telling customers, “Don’t use the post office if you want to be sure we get the application on time.”

As always, our office remains ready, willing and able to serve immigrants in need of visa or green card assistance, or general advice about immigration. For more information, you can check out our Website, or call our offices at (847) 564-0712 to make an appointment for a legal consultation.