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Filing a Lawsuit Against USCIS

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The only action proven to force USCIS to decide your case is to file a lawsuit against the immigration service in federal court. By doing this, you can ask a federal judge to either give you the immigration benefit you are seeking or to issue an order declaring the Controlled Application Review and Resolution Program (CARRP) to be illegal and directing USCIS to finally decide your case by a fixed deadline.

When filing a lawsuit against USCIS, it is important to work with a knowledgeable St. Louis, MO immigration delay attorney. The lawyers at Hacking Immigration Law, LLC can guide you through the process of filing a lawsuit against USCIS to help you get the answers you deserve.

Rights for Citizenship Applicants Under Federal Law

Federal law provides the protection that lawful permanent residents need in order to get movement on their long-delayed naturalization case. The law says that any government agency, including USCIS, has to decide your case within a reasonable amount of time.

If the immigration service refuses to act, you can sue them in federal court by filing a lawsuit against USCIS. Once you have already had your naturalization test and interview and more than 120 days (four months) have gone by, you can go into federal court and ask a judge to naturalize you themselves.

A judge can declare CARRP illegal and can prohibit USCIS from delaying your case under the program. A St. Louis, MO immigration lawyer can guide you through the process of bringing the case to a federal judge to help you get answers.

The Case Process Against USCIS

We file the case electronically and include N-400 receipt and biometric notices, any interview appointment letters or results, and a copy of your green card. Once a lawsuit has been filed against the USCIS, it usually names several defendants - the Department of Homeland Security, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS), the heads of each of those agencies, and the local field office. We also serve a copy on the Attorney General of the United States and the local U.S. Attorney who will be in charge of defending the USCIS lawsuit if the suit proceeds.

A few days later, the Court opens the file and issues summonses. A summons is a notice for the defendants that they have been sued in federal court and have to respond. Once the suit is served on the defendants, they have 60 days to file a response.

When the local U.S. Attorney’s office receives a copy of the USCIS lawsuit, it is assigned to a particular Assistant U.S. Attorney. The Assistant U.S. Attorney calls or emails the lawyer for USCIS to ask about the naturalization application and the cause of the delay. A lawyer then notifies the local field office of the lawsuit and asks why the case is taking so long. The local field officer is then forced to look at the case again and to figure out why the case has been delayed and then issue a decision.

Concluding the USCIS Lawsuit

Most of the time, we do not hear anything on our end until about 50 days after the defendants are served. Sometimes, we get outright approval without anything further. An oath ceremony is scheduled shortly thereafter.

The Assistant U.S. Attorney usually contacts our office to provide us with an update and information about where the case may be headed. Other times, the applicant gets a notice to appear for another naturalization follow-up interview. USCIS also sometimes sends an additional request for evidence after a lawsuit has been filed against them.

Only rarely do we get a denial without further information or interview requests. Once the immigration service issues its final decision, we dismiss the lawsuit in federal court and the process is finished.

Working with a St. Louis, MO Attorney to File a Lawsuit Against USCIS

We have had more than one individual tell us that after repeated calls with the 1-800 number that the operator told them to go ahead and sue USCIS because that is the only option they have that works. If you are ready to get answers, a St. Louis, MO immigration attorney can help you with filing a lawsuit against USCIS. To learn more, call today.

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