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E-Filing using USCIS ELIS

About USCIS ELIS

USCIS ELIS is a secure Web-based system that allows you to:

  • Pay the USCIS Immigrant Fee,
  • File a Form I-539, Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status, or
  • File a Form I-526, Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur.

Legal representatives may create an account and file Form I-539 or Form I-526 online (but they may not pay the USCIS Immigrant Fee for their clients).

 

Accessing USCIS ELIS

You can use the following Internet browsers to access USCIS ELIS:

  • Microsoft Internet Explorer versions 7 through 9; and
  • Mozilla Firefox versions 3 and 4.

USCIS plans to support additional browsers in the future. You cannot access USCIS ELIS using your phone because it currently does not support mobile access.

 

Creating an account

To create a USCIS ELIS online account, visit the USCIS ELIS home page. For a step-by-step video on how to create a USCIS ELIS online account, please see Establishing Online Access: USCIS ELIS Video.

Parents of a child younger than age 14 may create an account and submit an application on behalf of their child. They must list themselves as the preparer of the application.

A legal guardian for a developmentally or mentally disabled individual may create an account and submit an application on behalf of that individual. Legal guardians must list themselves as the preparer of the application. USCIS also may require them to submit documentation showing their authority to act on behalf of a developmentally or mentally disabled individual.

 

Paying the USCIS Immigrant Fee

Before you start to submit your USCIS Immigrant Fee, you should have your:

  • Alien Number (A-Number),
  • Department of State (DOS) Case ID, and
  • a valid credit, debit card, bank account information, pre-paid debit card, or your checking account number and routing number for your U.S. bank (if you want to have money taken directly from your bank account.

To find your A-Number and Department of State (DOS) Case ID, visit the Immigrant Fee Payment: Tips on Finding Your A-Number and DOS Case ID page.

USCIS Immigrant Fee customers should receive their Permanent Resident Card within 45 days into the United States.

 

Filing Form I-539, Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status

Before starting to complete the Form I-539 application, you should have:

  • Your passport with your nonimmigrant visa,
  • Your Form I-94, Arrival-Departure Record number,
  • Translations of any documents that are not in English,
  • Certified arrest reports, court dispositions, sentencing reports, and any other relevant documents to show the disposition of any criminal offenses,
  • A copy of a valid DS-2019, Certificate of Eligibility for Exchange Visitor (J-1), if you are an exchange visitor, and
  • Any documentary evidence you wish to use to support your request.

Please review the instructions for the Form I-539 to determine what documents are required and make sure you submit all the required documentation when you file your benefit request. The current processing time for all Form I-539s is 2.5 months.

 

Payment methods

To pay a fee, you can use a:

  • Credit card,
  • Debit card,
  • Pre-paid debit card (such as a Visa gift card),
    • If you pay with a pre-paid debit card, you can use only one card. The card must have enough money on it to pay for you and any family members.

OR

  • U.S. bank account (also known as an Automated Clearing House (ACH) payment).
    • To pay with a U.S. bank account, you must provide a checking account number and routing number for your U.S. bank.

 

Case status

You can find the current status of your USCIS ELIS case by logging in o your account and selecting your application, petition or request. You will then be taken to the case status page. You can find your current status at the top right corner of the page.

 

USCIS numbers to remember

You should keep a record of your USCIS ELIS Account ID and your Receipt ID.. Your USCIS ELIS Account ID is a 12-digit number unique to your USCIS ELIS account. You will not receive a USCIS ELIS Account ID until you apply for a benefit.

If you have already applied for a benefit, you can locate your USCIS ELIS Account ID by following the steps below:

  • Log in to your USCIS ELIS account;
  • Select the “View My Profile” button; and
  • Select the “Account” tab on the Account Information screen.

Your Receipt ID is a unique number that applies to your specific case with USCIS.  You can find your Receipt ID on your case receipt notice; it begins with the letters IOE.

If you did not receive a copy of your USCIS case receipt notice and would like a copy for your records, you may view and print a copy of your USCIS Case Receipt Notice from your USCIS ELIS account. After you log in to your USCIS ELIS account, access the "View Messages" tab to view or print your official case receipt confirmation from USCIS.

 

Troubleshooting

  • Log in problems: If you forgot your USCIS ELIS password or security questions, go to the USCIS ELIS log in screen, select the “Forgot or Need to Reset Your Password?” link. You will need to answer the security questions that you selected when you created the account. We will then send an email with instructions on how to reset your password to the email address associated with your account.

If you have forgotten or need to reset the answers to your security questions or if you continue to experience difficulties, please submit our online help form and we will assist you with your account.

  • Not enough space in the application for your full name: If your name is longer than 40 characters, please include as many letters as possible in the given fields and then include your full name in the “Additional Information” field on the bottom of most pages.
  • Missing Green Card: If after paying the USCIS Immigrant Fee you do not receive your Permanent Resident Card within 45 days, please submit our online help form to request assistance. Please make sure your mailing address is correct. You can update your mailing address in USCIS ELIS under the “View My Profile” section on the main menu.  You must also complete a USCIS Form AR-11, Change of Address. To learn more about the AR-11, Change of Address process please visit the AR-11 page.
  • An ineligible person files an application: USCIS will adjudicate all applications submitted in USCIS ELIS. If you are not eligible for the benefit requested, USCIS will deny your request and will not refund any fees that you paid.

 

For further assistance

Contact us by submitting our online help form. The more information you can provide us on this form, the better we will be able to assist you.

Last Reviewed/Updated: 10/23/2014