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USCIS Offers Disaster Relief Assistance

Officer Jarrell, USCIS Tampa Florida Office Oct. 4, 2022

Floods, Hurricanes, Earthquakes

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) reminds the public that they offer immigration services that may help people affected by unforeseen circumstances such as natural disasters in the United States and abroad.

Examples of unforeseen circumstances include, but are not limited to, the flooding in Pakistan and Hurricane Fiona in Puerto Rico.

The following measures may be available on a case-by-case basis upon request:

· Changing a nonimmigrant status or extending a nonimmigrant stay for an individual currently in the United States. If you fail to apply for the extension or change before the expiration of your authorized period of admission, they may excuse that if the delay was due to extraordinary circumstances beyond your control;

· Reparole of individuals previously granted parole by USCIS;

· Expedited processing of advance parole requests;

· Expedited adjudication of requests for off-campus employment authorization for F-1 students experiencing severe economic hardship;

· Expedited adjudication of petitions or applications, including employment authorization applications, when appropriate;

· Consideration of fee waiver requests due to an inability to pay;

· Flexibility for those who received a Request for Evidence or a Notice of Intent to Deny but were unable to submit evidence or otherwise respond in a timely manner;

· Flexibility if you were unable to appear for a scheduled interview with USCIS;

· Expedited replacement of lost or damaged immigration or travel documents issued by USCIS, such as a Permanent Resident Card (Green Card), Employment Authorization Document, or Form I-94, Arrival/Departure Record; and

· Rescheduling a biometric services appointment.

When you request help from USCIS:

Be ready to explain how the impact of unforeseen circumstances, such as a natural disaster, created a need for the requested relief.

If you lost all forms of evidence in an unforeseen circumstance, include an explanation in your description and a copy of a police report, insurance claim, or other reports, if available, to support your request.

Visit the Special Situations page or call USCIS for more information about how they assist individuals affected by extreme situations and unforeseen circumstances. To learn how to request these measures, call us at 800-375-5283. For people with disabilities: (TTY) 800-767-1833 or (VRS) 877-709-5797.

Please update your address with USCIS to ensure you receive all correspondence and benefits from them in a timely manner and avoid possible delays related to your case. To update your address with USCIS, visit the How to Change Your Address page. Please note that changing your address with the U.S. Postal Service will not change your address with USCIS.

Visit the Office Closings page to determine whether an office is open and to learn about rescheduling appointments. In particular, if your appointment was affected by unforeseen circumstances, you can reschedule your appointment online or by calling the USCIS Contact Center.

All Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification, requirements remain in place. Those affected by unforeseen circumstances should visit I-9 Central for more information on how to complete Form I-9 if an employee’s documents are lost, stolen, or damaged.

If you require additional help, please contact Usher Law Firm PA. Ocala, Florida Immigration Attorney John Usher has seen his share of hurricanes and is ready to offer assistance in any way possible.

To see this information on the USCIS website use this link: https://www.uscis.gov/newsroom/alerts/immigration-help-available-to-those-affected-by-natural-disasters-and-other-unforeseen-circumstances-2#:~:text=Visit%20our%20Special%20Situations%20page,)%20877%2D709%2D5797.