When Congress reaches an impasse on budget funding, the government shuts down certain services until it reaches a budget agreement. Until a budget agreement is reached, read how the government impasse may affect your immigration case.
What is a government shutdown?
Due to the Federal government's impasse on the budget, the government is in a partial *shut-down.* During the shut-down, generally those services either deemed essential, or those that are fee-funded, will not be affected. Following are answers to some common questions of immigration applicants.
1. Will the USCIS remain open?
Yes, for the most part. The USCIS is supported by *fee-based* services. So the USCIS will conduct interviews and process cases. Do not miss your scheduled appointment. Be fully prepared to present your case.
2. Will the U.S. Customs remain open?
Yes. The Customs is considered essential and much of its services will remain open.
3. Will the U.S. Department of State continue processing the visa cases?
Yes. Visa services and interviews will continue. Do not miss your scheduled appointment. Arrive on time and have all of your required documents ready to present to the Visa Officer.
4. Will the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) be open?
Yes. Most of the ICE operations, including detention and removal, will be open.
5. Will the Immigration Courts remain open?
The urgent cases such as detention and bond cases will resume. However, other cases might get delayed. If you have a hearing or deadline scheduled, contact the immigration court.
These are general suggestions for handling your immigration case during the government shut-down. If you have an immigration case that may be potentially affected by the government shut-down, contact an immigration attorney immediately for specific guidance as it relates to your case.
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