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What Should I Do if I Lost My Case with USCIS?

What Should I Do if I Lost My Case with USCIS?

If you have lost your case with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) then two things have likely occurred:

1. First, you applied for some immigration benefit with USCIS. Typically, cases include applications for asylum, a green card, DACA, or an N-400, although there are many other types of case.

2. Second, USCIS denied your case and sent you a denial notice. There are many reasons that USCIS may deny your case; some common reasons for denials are:

3. You did not provide enough evidence that you were eligible for the benefit sought;

  • You were ineligible for the benefit, or barred from receiving the benefit;
  • You are, or were deportable;
  • You didn’t fully comply for some aspect of the process;
  • USCIS erroneously denied your case- meaning that USCIS was wrong to deny your case and they should have approved it

When USCIS denies a case, they provide you with a detailed explanation for the denial. You need to know and understand the reason for the denial, to decide how to move forward.

You should meet with an experienced and knowledgeable immigration attorney, as soon as you receive the denial, in order to ascertain your options.

If you have lost your case with USCIS the first thing to know is that you have options. An attorney will provide you with the best options for your specific case, but generally speaking these are some of the more common options:

1. Appeal your case: Typically, you’ll appeal a USCIS denial to the Administrative Appeals Office. In some instances, the case can be appealed directly to Board of Immigration Appeals (for example, an I-130 denial).

2. File a Motion to Reconsider OR a Motion to Reopen: These motions are filed on Form 290B

3. Refile the entire case: Sometimes re-filing the entire case, from the start, is the best option. For example:

  • You filed an N-400 (Application for Naturalization), while you were on probation and your case was denied for lack of good moral character; however, you have now successfully completed your probation;
  • You filed an N-400; however, you did not have the requisite 3 or 5 years of residency to qualify for Naturalization; however, now you do.

4. File a Different Case: For example, you applied for a green card; however, your case was denied because you separated from or left your spouse. However, you were the victim of a crime, and you qualify for a U-visa. Perhaps, previously, the U-visa was not your best option, however, now it is a good option.

5. Do nothing: Sometimes this is the best option, especially if you weren’t eligible for the benefit in the first place. This may also be a good option if your attorney determines that you are deportable.

The most important take away here is to get good, sound legal advice before deciding what to do after a USCIS denial. Also, you should consult with an immigration attorney quickly. Some of these options are time sensitive, so you want to explore all your options while you still can.

If USCIS has denied an application for benefits, please contact a knowledgeable and experienced immigration attorney. Our attorneys at Landerholm Immigration, APC, have extensive experience in cases involving appeals, motions to reopen, motions to reconsider, and re-filings. Please feel free to call us at 510-488-1020 to see how we can help!


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