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  • Nataliia Drannik

USCIS Admits it Has Erroneously Rejected Applications

Although, on March 20, 2020, USCIS announced it would accept electronically reproduced signatures in form submissions during the coronavirus (COVID-19) national emergency, the agency has admitted that it has inadvertently rejected some filings where petitioners and applicants relied on that guidance.


In an email to stakeholders reproduced below, USCIS has stated that some Forms I-140 (Immigrant Petition for Alien Workers) that included e-certified ETA-9089s or blue ETA-9089s with electronically reproduced signatures were rejected. For those petitioners affected by these erroneous rejections, USCIS is asking to resubmit their Form I-140 with the blue ETA Form 9089s or e-certified ETA-9089s with either wet original signatures and/or scanned copies of the original signatures as well as a copy of the rejection notice.

If the petitioner’s erroneously rejected ETA-9089 expired between March 20 and May 18, 2020, USCIS will accept the re-filed Form I-140 petition along with the inadvertently rejected, expired ETA-9089.


Beyond this, we are aware that many Forms I-485 have been rejected due to an alleged lack of Form I-864 or I-944, even though they were included or are not applicable. According to the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), USCIS “has confirmed it is aware of these rejections and is taking steps to gain a better understanding of why this is occurring. For the time being, [USCIS] recommends that the Form I-944 and I-864 be included directly behind the Form I-485. AILA also reminds members that if the applicant is exempt from the I-864 requirement, to ensure that the appropriate box on page 14 of the Form I-485 is properly checked indicating the basis for the exemption from the I-864 requirement.”


Contact us today for more information regarding how interruptions to U.S. immigration processes affect your business or your family and/or to seek guidance on correcting errant rejections.


On March 20, 2020, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced it would accept electronically reproduced signatures in benefit requests during the coronavirus (COVID-19) national emergency. Similarly, on March 24, 2020, the Department of Labor (DOL) Office of Foreign Labor Certification (OFLC) announced that ETA Forms 9089, Application for Permanent Employment Certification (ETA 9089), will be issued electronically to employers and their authorized attorneys or agents.


USCIS inadvertently rejected some Forms I-140, Immigrant Petition for Alien Workers, that included these e-certified ETA-9089s or blue ETA-9089s with electronically reproduced signatures.


USCIS asks affected petitioners to resubmit their Form I-140 with the blue ETA Form 9089s or e-certified ETA-9089s with either wet original signatures and/or scanned copies of the original signatures as well as a copy of the rejection notice. In the event the petitioner’s inadvertently rejected ETA-9089 expired between March 20 and May 18, 2020, USCIS will accept the re-filed Form I-140 petition along with the inadvertently rejected, expired ETA-9089 during the national emergency.


For More Information


USCIS will provide further updates as the situation develops and will continue to follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidance. Please visit uscis.gov/coronavirus for the latest facts and other USCIS updates.


Kind regards,


Public Engagement Division


U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services

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