COVID-19 US Immigration Update April 2021

Further extension for agency requests

USCIS has confirmed it has extended the response period for certain agency requests, notices and decisions.

Under the extended temporary provisions, USCIS will continue to consider a response in relation to qualifying request, notices and decisions provided they are received within 60 calendar days from the stated response date, before any action is taken.

The extended response periods apply to certain requests, decisions and notices with an issuance date between March 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021. They were originally set to end in September 2020 and have now been extended several times in response to ongoing pandemic issues.

The following documents are covered by the temporary measure:

  • Requests for Evidence
  • Continuations to Request Evidence
  • Notices of Intent to Deny
  • Notices of Intent to Revoke
  • Notices of Intent to Rescind
  • Notices of Intent to Terminate regional centers
  • Motions to reopen N-400 (8 CFR 335.5)
  • Form N-336 and Form I-1290B provided a decision was made between March 1-30 2021and the form was filed within 60 days of the agency decision

Employers and foreign nationals will also have 60, rather than 30, days to file any appeal or motion to reopen a USCIS decision that was issued between March 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021.

Extensions of stay and employment authorization applications are not covered by the accommodation and must continue to be filed by the stated deadline.

US Canada – Mexico borders remain closed

US land borders to the north and south will remain closed through April 21, 2021, at the earliest. The pandemic restrictions will stay in place, prohibiting non-essential travel including tourism and recreation.

The restrictions have now been in place for 13 months, affecting land border crossings, train travel and passenger ferries, but not air travel.

Travel remains permissible for essential travel only, which includes: US citizens and lawful permanent residents returning home, travelers crossing the borders for employment purposes, those engaged in cross-border trade and people travelling for medical treatment, education, public health or other permissible reasons.

US immigration advice

NNU Immigration is actively monitoring the impact of the pandemic on US immigration policy and application processing.

As the situation continues to develop, please contact our US immigration specialists for the latest advice for your specific circumstances.

This article does not constitute direct legal advice and is for informational purposes only.

Last updated: April 5, 2021.