Immigration Relief in Emergencies or Unforeseen Circumstances

ALERT: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services would like to remind the public that the United States provides immigration and related services to assist individuals affected by emergencies and unforeseen circumstances, including the Israel-Hamas conflict. The following resources offer information that may be helpful for those impacted.

Unforeseen circumstances, such as natural catastrophes (hurricanes, wildfires, severe weather, etc.), national emergencies (public health emergencies), severe illness (including COVID), or conflicts abroad, can sometimes impact the processing of your USCIS application, petition, or immigration request.

USCIS has the discretion to take the following measures on a case-by-case basis upon request, if you have been affected by an unforeseen circumstance:

  1. Request assistance by calling the USCIS Contact Center at 800-375-5283. For people with disabilities: (TTY) 800-767-1833 or (VRS) 877-709-5797. To request an expedite through the Contact Center, you must have already filed a benefit request and have a receipt number.
  2. When requesting help, explain how the impact of an unforeseen circumstance (domestic or international) created a need for the requested relief. Include an explanation in your description and a copy of a police report, insurance claim, or other report, if available, to support your request.
  3. Domestically, USCIS will apply flexibilities as appropriate to individuals affected by natural catastrophes who live in a location that FEMA has identified as a disaster area for purposes of public assistance. Include evidence that you reside in one of the affected counties when requesting assistance.
  4. Update your address with USCIS to ensure you receive all correspondence and benefits in a timely manner. To update your address with USCIS, visit our How to Change Your Address page.

Please note that changing your address with the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) will not change your address with USCIS. Contact USPS if you need to temporarily hold or forward your mail due to unforeseen circumstances or a temporary relocation.

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