On September 28, 2017, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Ombudsman outlined protocols for new USCIS in-person interviews required for employment-based applicants effective October 1, 2017. Interviews will be scheduled by field offices for every applicant who has filed an I-485 after March 6, 2017 and notices will be sent to both the applicant and the representing attorney. If additional evidence is needed, USCIS will request prior to the interview. At the interview, officers will review I-485 questions, eligibility criteria, work experience, and educational experience. Additionally, officers will confirm bona fide relationships of family members. USCIS will consider interview waivers for applicants under the age of fourteen.
USCIS has increased staffing and predicts the new interview requirement will only have a small impact on processing times. However, our experience in 2017 has been substantially increased processing times in all applications.