After filing your petition with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS), you may be wondering what happens next. Since this agency and the US immigration courts are seeing serious backlogs, it’s a natural question to ask. Your next step will be to wait to receive your “Notice of Action.” This is a receipt notice to let you know that they have received your petition and are starting the process. This notice is essential for a variety of factors, and we are going to take a look at that in this article.

In this notice, you’ll be alerted as to the status of a benefit you may be seeking, or if USCIS is attempting to communicate with you about a rejection, an appointment, a transfer, an extension or something similar. It’s important to read this notice carefully and follow the directions on it – and if you don’t understand something, please run it by your attorney. This notice also serves two other purposes.

Provides Proof of Petition – This Notice of Action alerts anyone who may question your presence in the US that your petition is being handled correctly. Don’t lose the notice since replacing it can be costly. Keep it in a safe place.

Track and Identify – This letter contains a receipt number that you can use for various purposes such as tracking your case online, as well as communicating with USCIS officials on the phone or if you have to mail them requested documents. This number is important to give your immigration attorney or deportation defense lawyer, so they can use it on your behalf. If you have to appear (for an interview for example), this number is essential to have as well.

Understanding The Receipt Number

The receipt number tells a bit of a story about you and your immigration case. It alerts you and others about where your petition is being processed. It’s comprised of three letters and 10-numbers. The letters are the ID of the location office your petition is being handled. The digits on the receipt are specific as well. The first two represent the year that your petition was received. The three numbers that follow, define the computer that did the intake and processed the fee associated with your petition. The next five digits are sequential and reveal what kind of petition was filed.

Anytime that you or your attorney want to communicate with someone about your case, this receipt number is crucial to do that. Otherwise, there is no way of telling what agency has the petition or who would need to be contacted.

Finally, if you have received an I-751 notice which is called a Petition to Remove Conditions, the Notice of Action extends the conditions of the green card status automatically. This is significant because your notice extends the petition for green card status for up to 18-months while the I-751 is with the USCIS and pending.

Have questions about your Notice of Action or what it might be requested of you? Contact Landerholm Immigration to have your notice reviewed and get some answers today.