Attention: Please note that we at Michael G. Murray, P.A. cannot change the time it takes for USCIS to process your application. The information below is provided for your convenience and is subject to change. For the most up-to-date information about USCIS processing times, please visit their page here.
Texas USCIS Processing Time: What to Expect When Filing an Immigration Petition
UNDERSTANDING USCIS PROCESSING TIME TEXAS ESTIMATES
The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is a government agency that deals with legal immigration to the United States. Since March 1, 2003, this agency has processed countless applications for foreign-born persons to lawfully live and work in the United States.
If you are submitting an immigrant petition or application with USCIS, it will either be processed with one of five USCIS service centers (supported by field offices) or the National Benefits Center. The service center locations include the following:
- California Service Center
- Nebraska Service Center
- Potomac Service Center
- Texas Service Center
- Vermont Service Center
The service center that will process your service request or case depends on the type of application you are submitting as well as the filing instructions for the immigration forms within that application. However, your area of residence may also be a factor. If you live in Vermont, for example, your case may or may not be processed by the Vermont Service Center and instead could be processed by the Texas Service Center if you submitted a form that is processed by the Texas Service Center.
Unfortunately, applicants should expect a rather lengthy wait after they submit their immigration petition. This wait is known as the processing time, which can be defined as the estimated time range for immigration officials to complete the procedures required for an individual to receive a visa or become a permanent resident of the United States.
All USCIS offices have their standard processing times, and the Texas USCIS local field office is no different. However, the quality and completeness of your application or petition can play a role in the processing time of your unique case. This is why it is crucial that you hire a capable attorney from a reputable immigration law firm to ensure that all forms are filled out correctly and that the process runs as smoothly as possible.
USCIS TEXAS SERVICE CENTER PROCESSING TIME
The processing times issued by the USCIS Texas Service Center can give you or your immediate relatives an estimated time range for how long it would take to process a petition for a visa or adjustment of status.
As mentioned above, the area of your USCIS service center is dependent on the filing instructions in the form you will be presented with and the type of form you are filing. USCIS service centers usually process cases on a “first come, first serve” basis.
When filing your application to get a green card, you must follow all the instructions and requirements for that specific petition. Your application process must have no complications, as that will limit your chances of getting your visa or significantly delay the process.
Current processing times can be accessed using this page on the USCIS website. Here are a few tips to help you find your USCIS processing time:
- Ensure that your USCIS receipt number begins with “SRC.” Your receipt date notice should have “Notice Action.”
- Identify your form number. The form number also acts as the purpose of your application.
- Identify the particular sub-type for your application (this is not applicable in all cases).
- Identify the section with the title “Now Processing Cases With Receipt Notice Date Of.” If it is dated, the Texas Service Center is currently handling all forms filed before the date on which USCIS received your application.
Different cases have their normal processing times. However, if you have a unique case, you can talk to your attorney or consult someone in the service center to get a better idea of how long you can expect to wait for a decision. Additionally, if your case is taking longer than expected to be processed, you can submit a case inquiry with the USCIS using its e-Request tool here.
USCIS PROCESSING TIME INFORMATION FOR THE TEXAS SERVICE CENTER
Different kinds of immigration forms can be filed to apply to lawfully live or work in the United States. Below are some of the forms currently processed by the Texas Service Center:
- Petition for Alien Relative
- Petition for Alien Fiance(e).
- Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker.
- Application for Permission to Reapply for Admission into the United States After Removal.
- Application to Apply for Permanent Residence or to Adjust Status.
- Application for Travel Document (such as a refugee travel document, advance parole travel document, or re-entry permit).
- Application for Family Unity Benefits.
- Refugee/Asylee Relative Petition.
- Application To Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status
- Application for Employment Authorization
- Application for Temporary Protected Status
- Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker (H-1B specialty occupation – visa to be issued abroad)
A full list of the service center handling each of the common forms, petitions, and applications can be viewed here. Most of these applications and petitions have multiple USCIS service center bases for filing, so the normal processing time for a specific type of petition may vary depending on the office or service center handling your application.
USCIS I-485 PROCESSING TIME TEXAS
One of the most common of the above petitions is the Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status. Adjustment of Status (AOS) is the process used to apply for green cards while applicants are already in the USA, i.e., if they are a current non-immigrant visa holder. To get an Adjustment of Status, you have to file a Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Resident or Adjust Status.
This process is pretty convenient because you need not return to your country to complete your visa process. And even if your visa does expire during the processing time, you can legally continue staying in the U.S.
It’s important to note that not all I-485 applications are processed at the USCIS Texas Service Center. Any forms filed under HRIFA, the Indochinese Adjustment Act, the Legal Immigration and Family Equity Act, or NACARA will be processed at the Nebraska Service Center.
The typical USCIS service center processing time for Form I-485, Adjustment of Status, depends on two factors:
- If you are married to a citizen of the United States (8-14 months)
- If you are married to a green card holder (also known as a permanent resident) (29-38 months)
The timing is also very dependent on the location of the USCIS service center where you filed your application. The AOS filing fees are dependent on age and if your parents are also involved in the filing process. A good attorney-client relationship is quite necessary for this as your visa lawyer can walk you through everything you need to know, from the filing fees to requirements, etc.
CHECK YOUR USCIS CASE STATUS
The USCIS case takes significant processing time. Normally, it is a long process, but if you think that things are taking too much time and you aren’t sure about the status of your petition/case, you can easily check it online or via phone.
To check your case’s status via phone, give a call at 1-800-375-5283 and say “CHECK STATUS.” You will be then asked for your receipt number, and you will be notified about its status. But, as of 2018, USCIS is no longer entertaining questions related to current cases. So, if you want to ask specific legal questions, it is best to ask a lawyer. This way, your case will be settled faster.
Another easier way to check your case status is by accessing the USCIS website. All you have to do is to input your receipt number and hit the enter button.
FACTORS AFFECTING USCIS PROCESSING TIME TEXAS
Applying for a visa or green card is a delicate legal process that will require you to wait for a couple of months, at a minimum. Various factors affect the USCIS processing times, and some of them are:
- Your current area of residence.
- The number of applications and petitions dealt with by the USCIS at that period.
- How you filled the information on your form and whether your form was appropriately filed.
- Your particular case status.
- How many other applicants are involved in your case, particularly if you have an unmarried child under the age of 21 or other dependent applying with you.
- Whether there is a U.S. citizen or permanent resident filing as the petitioner for the principal applying individual.
One factor that significantly affects USCIS processing times is the type of attorney you hire. A great attorney will walk you through the entire process and help you clearly understand the options available to you, thereby helping to reduce your wait times. You will also benefit from your lawyer’s vast experience because they have handled many cases and have a deep-rooted knowledge of the processes.
HOW CAN AN EXPERT ATTORNEY BE OF HELP?
When filing for a green card, you have to be careful about several complex things. Dealing with everything on your own, all alone, can definitely be stressful. However, if you hire an experienced immigration lawyer, you will be free from several problems. In general, here is how an attorney can help you.
An experienced attorney will help you understand where you stand in eligibility status, the situation of your case, and how the process will be depending on your unique case details. Although the process takes too much time, with the help of an experienced attorney, you will be able to avoid mistakes in the application process. Thus making things easier for the authorities will help you save time.
If you are looking for a solid attorney with an exceptional ability for success, contact Michael G. Murray, P.A. today. Our experienced attorneys will help you understand all legal options and make the process as quick as possible.