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What is Holding Up My Immigration Case?

What is Holding Up My Immigration Case?Are you getting nervous or anxious wondering why it is taking so long for your immigration application to be processed? You are certainly not alone and sometimes even an experienced s help cannot make it go faster. It is just the way the office of immigration operates. However, Minnesota immigration attorneys may not able to help expedite the process, but they can track your application and make sure it was filed correctly and can check to see where your case falls in the queue.

There are many reasons you haven’t heard back from immigration concerning your case. Here are the most common explanations Minnesota immigration attorneys see:

  • If you had a change of address since you filed your application. There is a form you can fill out online called Form AR-11, titled “USCIS Online Change of Address.” Minnesota immigration attorneys can tell you that this is required legally for all immigrants to report any change of address. However, even if you did use the proper form for changing your address, the change doesn’t necessarily make it to the right offices. If you think that may be the reason for the delay, you can submit a letter with a copy of the change of address form and your application to USCIS.


  • It is taking a long time for your security check to be processed. If part of the application process required you to submit your fingerprints, this means they will be sent to the FBI so they can check your immigration record and also see if you have a criminal record. Unfortunately, immigration attorneys in Minnesota know that, if your name is common or you have a long record, it may take a significant amount of time to process your information.



  • Immigration lost your file. Yes, it happens. That’s why it is so important you keep a complete copy of everything you submitted.  Never send originals if it is okay to send copies. Once your case is in the system, it is assigned a case number. However, if your file was lost prior to a case number being assigned, it will be difficult to trace. Another reason it may be advantageous to hire an attorney. Minnesota immigration attorneys know how to track your case and if they find you were not even assigned a case number, they can help you write a letter to the immigration office, attaching the copy of your application.



  • The U.S. Immigration office is extremely behind in processing cases.  This is very common and usually, the USCIS looks at applications as they come in. Some applications that are employee-related may take priority if they have paid additional money for ‘premium processing’.


You can check on the USCIS website for an idea of how long their processing times are at particular service centers. If you were given a case number, you can find out where your application is in the process by going to the “My Case Status” page.


  • A limited number of visas available for certain categories. Some categories for a green card or visa applicants have a limited amount of visas available each year. Therefore, a longer waiting period is to be expected. There really isn’t anything you can do about it except check on the status of your case and make sure you update your address if you have a change.


If you have additional questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to meet with one of the accomplished Minnesota immigration attorneys at JOHNSTON | MARTINEAU, PLLP.  Call today!

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