USCIS to Require Interviews for All Employment Based Green Card Applications

USCIS has announced that, commencing October 1, 2017, it will require an in-person interview in connection with all employment-based adjustment of status applications, a break from long term practice. USCIS policy has been to waive the interview requirement in most employment based green card cases unless there is a clear inadmissibility issue, such as a criminal conviction. USCIS will also start requiring interviews for relatives of asylees and refugees who are already in the U.S. and are seeking to remain with their relative.

Adjustment of status interviews are conducted at USCIS Field Offices, which are already overburdened by the family based cases they principally handle. Adding employment based and asylee/refugee applicant interviews will undoubtedly lengthen the wait time for USCIS to approve all green card applications processed in the U.S. USCIS states that they will "meet the additional interview requirement through enhancements in training and technology as well as transitions in some aspects of case management" which appears to rule out the addition of new immigration officers to actually hear cases.

Not a welcome development, and one intended, no doubt, to slow the pace of green card approvals.