Processing Times and Case Status
To be fair to all our customers, we process cases that are the same type based on the order of when they were filed. We will notify you, usually by mail, when we make a decision on your case, or if we need something from you.
Want an idea of how long it will take us to process your case?
The easiest way to monitor our processing time is on our website, where we post the filing dates of cases that we are now completing. We list this information for each kind of case and for every USCIS office and service center. This lets you project how long it will be before your case is completed.
As you use this information, keep in mind that this processing time is not just a projection of how long it will take to process your case from start to finish. It is a projection of how long it will take to process cases that were filed before yours and then process yours.
Processing times can change as we process cases. We update our information as we process cases. So, if you don't hear from us within the processing time based on what we are completing now, just check our website, or call customer service for updated processing time information.
Most of the time a case is pending we will be working on other cases filed earlier. But many customers still want to be able to track the processing of their case. So, we assign receipt numbers to each case that we process in our service centers and, in fact, to most new cases.
The receipt number is simply an inventory control number assigned to a case. It starts with three letters, such as "VSC," and then has a series of numbers. If your case was assigned a receipt number, you will find it on the receipt notice or biometrics appointment notices that we mail you about the case.
You can use your receipt number on our website, or when you call customer service, to get basic case status information from our automated systems to supplement the information about processing times.
If you have a receipt number available, check Case Status Online for the most recent action taken in your case.
Please keep several things in mind if you choose to use your receipt number to check case status and track the processing of your case.
First, most of the time your case is pending we will be processing cases that were filed before yours. Therefore, the status of your case may not change until we get to the end of the normal processing time.
Second, our focus is on processing cases because we understand the effect processing times have on customers. The case status information we offer if fairly basic. While your case is within the normal processing time, this basic automated case status is all that we will provide. We will not research your case to give you details about the status of your case.
The ability to track case processing is only available to customers whose cases have a receipt number. We manage other cases based on your account number, which is often called an A-number. These start with an "A", followed by an eight or nine digit number. For these cases, you can monitor processing time for the type of case, but you cannot track the processing of your particular case.