Questions & Answers: USCIS.gov Redesign
On June 25, President Obama announced that in the next 90 days USCIS would launch a vastly improved USCIS.gov public website to help customers navigate the immigration system and remain up-to-date regarding their case status. USCIS has committed to delivering on this promise by incorporating both internal and external stakeholder feedback.
Questions and Answers
Q. How will USCIS ensure that the new website will remain up-to-date?
A. USCIS will implement a new approach to the management of the site. We will continue to engage users and work to deliver the information and features they tell us they need. USCIS will actively solicit feedback through focus groups, email, and other methods. Please take a moment to tell us what you think about the site by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q. What will happen if a customer is given information on the website that is different from the information given by the National Customer Service Center (NCSC)?
A. The information posted on USCIS.gov will be the same information used by the call centers to answer customer inquiries. A large part of the redesign effort was a review of the content on the site. This review was conducted by collaborative groups that included subject matter experts, as well as customer service and communications staff. This collaboration allowed us to revamp the information available on the website and ensure that it matches that available from the NCSC. If you find incorrect information or are told something different by the NCSC than what you see on the site, please take a moment to let us know at email@example.com and we will ensure it is corrected.
Q. Will there be a way for representatives to update their addresses online?
A. Not at this time. The website redesign did not include changes to the online change of address system.
Q. Will USCIS provide more information in the case status emails than what is currently given?
A. The new ‘My Case Status’ feature will provide better context about how a customer’s case is progressing. This includes what step their case is in, a description of that step, what the position of that step is in the process as a whole, average processing time for their case and processing time information for the office where their case is pending.
Q. How can customers sign up for the new function that will allow them to receive case status updates by text message?
A. Customers will be able to sign up to receive updates via text message on September 22, 2009 by selecting ‘Sign-up for Case Updates’ from the home page and creating an account or adding alerts to an existing account. Once a customer signs into his/her secure account, ‘My Case Status’ provides the option to receive emails and/or text message notifications once a case has been updated. The text message will let the customer know that there has been an update and direct them to login to their account to see what action has been taken on their case. For those representing many customers, each case may have different email/text settings.
Q. If an applicant receives a text message that there has been a change in the status of his or her application and then checks ‘My Case Status,’ will he or she be given more information? For example, will the online case status information note that an RFE (request for evidence) has been sent or that a case has been denied?
A. Yes, the customer will be able to access ‘My Case Status’ to view the latest action taken on their specific case.
Q. If a case is transferred from one USCIS office to another, will the ‘My Case Status’ function reflect which office it has been transferred to?
A. Yes, ‘My Case Status’ will indicate that the case has been transferred and to which office.
Q. If a customer checks his or her case status online and a decision has been made on the application or petition, will the case status say if it is approved or not?
A. This will depend on the action taken and the case type. Customers will receive a message stating that their case was approved or that a notice has been sent.
Q. If a customer checks his or her case status online after a decision has been made on the application or petition, how will the case status note if a Notice of Intent to Revoke has been issued?
A. The case status system will not display a Notice of Intent to Revoke.
Q. If a customer is sent a second Request for Evidence (RFE), what notification will he or she receive?
A. When a customer visits ‘My Case Status,’ the status message will reflect that a notice that has been sent and the processing step will display that the case is in “RFE.”
Q. When will applicants be able to file Form N-400 online?
A. The scope of the website redesign did not encompass electronic filing. Changes to electronic filing involve a larger operational impact that more closely aligns with USCIS’ multi-year business transformation initiative.
Q. Will you be able to create separate categories and separate web pages for the Cuban and Haitian program and Afghan/Iraqi Special Immigrant Visas?
A. Yes, we have created new pages that specifically cover these topics. Because there is not enough space on the homepage, these categories are not listed on the main page of the website. However, if you click on the ‘Green Card’ heading, the new page will list both the Cuban and Haitian and Afghan/Iraqi special immigrant visas under the ‘Other Ways to Get a Green Card’ sub-topic.