The US immigration service US Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) is adopting a risk-based approach that waives interviews for certain applicants who have filed Form I-751 (Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence).

Non-citizens who obtain permanent resident status based on a marriage that began less than two years earlier, receive their status on a conditional basis for two years. Filing Form I-751 enables these conditional permanent residents (CPRs) to remove the conditions on permanent resident status.

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If you need assistance with filing an I-751 or would like to discuss an interview waiver, please feel free to contact us.

Maria Gandarez, Partner, Pryor Cashman LLP*, New York, USA

Effective immediately, this update replaces the previous agency guidance that required CPRs to undergo a mandatory interview if they obtained CPR status via consular processing. Under the new risk-based approach, USCIS may waive the interview requirement if the adjudicating officer determines the following:

  • The applicant generally meets the eligibility requirements.
  • There is sufficient evidence of a bona fide marriage.
  • The joint-filing requirement is eligible for a waiver (if applicable).
  • There is no indication of fraud or misrepresentation in supporting documents.
  • There are no complex facts or issues to resolve.
  • There is no criminal history that would render the CPR removable.

By adopting this new risk-based approach, USCIS hopes to increase efficiency and decrease processing times. This update comes as a result of the agency’s continuing efforts to better allocate staffing resources, eliminate burdens for applicants seeking benefits and address the concerns of the public and stakeholders.

For further information please contact:

Maria Gandarez, Partner, Pryor Cashman LLP*, New York, USA

*Ecovis cooperates with Pryor Cashman LLP, a US-based law firm with offices in New York and Los Angeles.