Budget, Planning and Performance

Measuring and managing performance is essential to effective, efficient, and economical delivery of services to the public. We are always working to make our measures more meaningful and better focused on those we serve.

Our mission and general information about us.

Budget and Performance

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services’ Budget Overview Document for Fiscal Year 2022 (PDF, 415.86 KB) describes funding and resources to support our legislatively mandated mission.

Strategic Plan 2019-2021

Our plan (PDF, 547.91 KB) aligns with the DHS Strategic Plan (PDF) to ensure a safe, secure and prosperous Homeland. Our strategic goals are to:

  1. Strengthen our investment in an empowered workforce to better accomplish the agency’s mission;
  2. Safeguard the homeland by deterring, detecting and addressing vulnerabilities in the immigration system;
  3. Ensure fair and efficient benefit adjudication and information delivery; and
  4. Continuously improve key processes, programs and systems.

Funding

USCIS funding comes primarily from fees we charge applicants or petitioners requesting immigration or naturalization benefits. These fee collections fund the cost of fairly and efficiently adjudicating immigration benefit requests. Fees we collect from individuals and entities filing immigration benefit requests are deposited into the Immigration Examinations Fee Account (IEFA). The IEFA was created by Congress in 1988, establishing the authority to recover the full cost of immigration benefit processing. This account comprises approximately 90 percent of USCIS' total FY 2022 spending authority.

In accordance with the Chief Financial Officers Act of 1990 (CFO Act), 31 U.S.C. 901-03, and Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Circular A-25, USCIS biennially reviews the non-statutory fees deposited into the IEFA. If necessary, DHS proposes fee adjustments to ensure full cost recovery. [1] The remaining budget authority comes from two other mandatory fee accounts and appropriated funding for the E-Verify program.
 

[1] USCIS proposed fee adjustments as a result of the FY 2019/2020 IEFA fee review. See https://www.regulations.gov/docket?D=USCIS-2019-0010

USCIS Fiscal Year 2020 Accomplishments

  • In 2020, USCIS implemented an electronic registration process for the H-1B cap. Prospective petitioners seeking to file H-1B cap-subject petitions, including for beneficiaries eligible for the advanced degree exemption, must first electronically register and then pay the associated $10 H-1B registration fee for each beneficiary. The electronic registration process has streamlined processing by eliminating paperwork required for cap selection and has provided overall cost savings to employers seeking to file H-1B cap-subject petitions.
  • USCIS naturalized 625,000 new citizens in FY 2020.
  • USCIS completed over 110,000 naturalization oaths that were postponed because of temporary office closures due to COVID-19, which occurred on March 18, 2020. Upon reopening in early June 2020[1], USCIS prioritized naturalization efforts through deployment of abbreviated ceremony formats that enabled efficient processing through social distancing and other COVID-19 mitigation efforts. USCIS eliminated the naturalization oath backlog as of July 31, 2020.
  • USCIS approved approximately 147,000 petitions or applications for employment-based visas.
  • USCIS interviewed over 1,300 refugee applicants and supported the admission of almost 12,000 refugees to the United States[2]; adjudicated over 1,300 humanitarian parole requests; completed[3] over 56,000 affirmative asylum applications; and processed over 33,500 credible fear cases and almost 7,500 reasonable fear cases.
  • USCIS implemented video-facilitated interviewing to conduct affirmative asylum interviews while applicants, representatives, and asylum officers sat separately in different offices to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, while continuing to adjudicate asylum applications and avoid adverse delays. By July 2020, USCIS had implemented video-teleconferencing procedures for interviewing certain refugee applicants overseas.
  • USCIS awarded $9.8M in citizenship and integration grants under two competitive funding opportunities to 39 organizations, located in 18 states, to help approximately 27,500 permanent residents prepare for naturalization and increased knowledge of English, U.S. history, and civics.
  • USCIS added approximately 76,000 employers to the E-Verify program, growing to more than 967,000 employer participants at the end of FY 2020. The program processed 37 million employee work authorization verification requests during FY 2020.
  • USCIS processed approximately 19 million immigration status queries from public benefit-granting agencies through the Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements (SAVE) program.
  • USCIS conducted 4,345 targeted worksite visits in FY 2020 under the Targeted Site Visit and Verification Program (TSVVP), which is designed to detect both fraud and compliance issues and is data-driven in its approach to petition selection. Of these visits, 191 resulted in a finding of fraud and an additional 974 were found to be noncompliant.[4]
  • USCIS processed more than 58 million biographic and biometric screenings on applicant information through law enforcement and other federal databases using ATLAS. These detections generated approximately 131,000 automated detections requiring further analysis and review by USCIS officers, resulting in over 15,500 fraud, public safety, and national security cases.
 

[1] As USCIS reopened to the public, USCIS resumed in-person services gradually by the number of people that could be seen safely under COVID-19 social distancing protocols. As part of the reopening strategy, USCIS engaged with the USCIS’ team of medical and industrial hygiene experts to ensure work was able to be safely conducted. With the team’s guidance, field offices implemented a multi-layered strategy based on CDC and DHS guidelines, including; enhanced entry procedures, requiring face coverings for employees and visitors, plexiglass shields, increasing ventilation, limiting attendees at interviews, maximized telework for employees, social distancing, enhanced cleaning, hand sanitizer, and mandatory visitor temperature screening.

[2] Due to COVID-19, USCIS curtailed refugee processing circuit rides in Quarter 2 of FY 2020 and was unable to deploy staff for the remainder of the fiscal year.  This impacted the number of refugee interviews USCIS was able to complete and the number of refugee admissions in FY 2020. 

[3] A completion includes the full range of final actions USCIS can take on an application. Not all applications received are adjudicated (given a decision on the merits of the claim) and some are administratively closed.

[4] “Noncompliant” means that the petitioner is in violation of the terms of the petition or that the beneficiary is in violation of the terms of the visa classification.

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