Last week, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services launched a new tool allowing benefit requestors, and their attorneys to reschedule most biometric services appointments before the date of the appointment. This is extremely beneficial as the previous methods of requesting new appointments was to either call the USCIS contact center, or provide a written request to USCIS. Now, those individuals can use a USCIS account (regardless if the application was filed electronically) to reschedule most requests for biometric services appointments without having to call the Contact Center.
It is important to note that the new tool cannot be used to reschedule an appointment that already has been rescheduled two or more times, is within 12 hours, or that has already passed. USCIS only accepts untimely rescheduling requests made to the USCIS Contact Center and does not accept untimely requests to reschedule by mail or in-person at a USCIS office or through the myUSCIS online rescheduling tool.
“The biometric services appointment rescheduling tool can be accessed via a USCIS online account regardless of whether the pending case was submitted online or by mail. Benefit requestors and accredited representatives will still have the option to call the USCIS Contact Center to reschedule an appointment, but USCIS strongly encourages users to use the new tool to save time, increase efficiency, and reduce call volume to the USCIS Contact Center.”
USCIS is also adding guidance in the USCIS Policy Manual to explain what the agency considers an untimely request to reschedule a biometrics appointment, failure to appear for an appointment, and what “good cause” is defined as for missing an appointment. They have stated that the good cause reasons may include, but are not limited to:
- Illness, medical appointment, or hospitalization;
- Previously planned travel;
- Significant life events such as a wedding, funeral, or graduation ceremony;
- Inability to obtain transportation to the appointment location;
- Inability to obtain leave from employment or caregiver responsibilities; and
- Late delivered or undelivered biometric services appointment notice.
Please be sure to reach out to our office if you are unable to attend your scheduled biometrics appointment.