With the spread of COVID-19 and the attempt to prevent its spread, in addition to the travel bans in place by the President, U.S. government agencies are starting to shut down. Furthermore, other countries are starting to follow suit and shut its borders in an attempt to contain the virus.
USCIS announced on March 17, 2020, that it will shut all its field offices, Application Support Centers, and asylum offices until at least April 1. This will affect procedures such as biometrics, adjustment of status interviews, oath ceremonies, etc. USCIS will still continue to provide emergency services. Those who had appointment notices will receive a new appointment notice for their schedule appearances. Please visit the USCIS website for more information.
There is no update yet regarding the closures of Service Centers, which process immigrant and nonimmigrant petitions.
U.S. Consulates and Embassies Closures
Due to the concern of COVID-19 spread, U.S. consulates and embassies around the world are beginning to either close, or severely limit its services. The current trend is that most U.S. consulates or embassies will close very soon. Please check with the location where you have an appointment before attending to confirm whether it is still offering services, or staying open. As of this date, the following have either closed, or have limited services, and we include the below list which is not comprehensive. Please check each consulate’s specific website.
- United Kingdom
- Czech Republic
Central America/ Americas
- Costa Rica
- Dominican Republic
- Hong Kong/ Macau
- South Korea
- Saudi Arabia
- Burkina Faso
- Dem Rep of Congo
- Sierra Leone
- South Africa
International Travel Considerations
The U.S. State Department has just issued an alert warning against ANY international travel for U.S. citizens. Along with the United States, other countries are also putting travel restrictions in place. To check whether there are any issues with leaving the United States and entering another country, access the U.S. State Department Website.