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Corona Virus Immigration Update March 18, 2020

Gladstein and Messinger, Queensimmigrationlaw.com, remains open to assist our clients with all immigration matters.   We will continue to provide in-person consultations.  Phone or video consultations can be arranged for those staying home.  Call us at 718-793-7800.

Last night it was announced by the Executive Office for Immigration Review, the Immigration Courts, that starting today March 18, 2020, only detained removal and deportation hearings will proceed as schedule.  All master calendar or individual Immigration Court hearings are postponed and will be re-scheduled at a later date.   This means that only aliens in ICE custody will have their cases proceed as scheduled.

Also, last night the Public Engagement Division of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, USCIS, sent out the following release:

“To protect our workforce and to help mitigate the spread of Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) in our communities, effective immediately, USCIS is suspending all routine face-to-face services with applicants at all of our offices, including all interviews and naturalization ceremonies.

All USCIS field offices, asylum offices and Application Support Centers (ASCs) will not provide in-person services until at least April 1. This includes interviews, naturalization ceremonies and biometric collection appointments. However, we will continue to provide emergency services during this time. If you have an emergency service request, please contact the USCIS Contact Center. USCIS field offices will send de-scheduling notices to applicants and petitioners with scheduled appointments impacted by this closure. We will send de-scheduling notices to naturalization applicants scheduled for naturalization ceremonies. All applicants will be rescheduled when USCIS resumes normal operations.

USCIS asylum offices will send interview cancellation notices and automatically reschedule asylum interviews. When the interview is rescheduled, asylum applicants will receive a new interview notice with the new time, date and location of the interview.

USCIS will also automatically reschedule ASC appointments due to the office closure. Those impacted will receive a new appointment letter in the mail. Individuals who had InfoPass or other appointments at the field office must reschedule through the USCIS Contact Center once field offices are open to the public againPlease check to see if your field office has been reopened before reaching out to the USCIS Contact Center.

Additionally, USCIS is postponing all in-person public engagement and outreach events for the duration of the office closure. Please contact public.engagement@uscis.dhs.gov if you have an immediate engagement question during this time.

Education and precautions are the strongest tools against infection. Get the latest facts by visiting the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s COVID-19 website. Continue to practice good health habits, refrain from handshakes or hugs as greetings, and clean hands and surfaces appropriately.

USCIS will provide further updates as the situation develops and will continue to follow CDC guidance in response to this situation. Please visit uscis.gov/coronavirus for updates.”

Further updates will be provided as new information is received.

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