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If you are tired of answering machine and chatbots: how to reach a live operator in USCIS

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) processes about one billion applications each year. To handle such a heavy workload, USCIS has developed automated systems to deal with many issues. But, as it turns out, if your issue is not resolved by a bot, then contacting a person can be a very difficult task. Edition onshorecare decided to figure out how to talk to a consultant.

Photo: IStock

Although, in truth, the USCIS online options are not much less than the options of a consultant, so before you spend precious hours (not minutes!) of your time, make sure that you definitely cannot resolve your issue in any other way. And also note that if you wait all the time, contact the consultant, then they do not provide any legal advice and do not make an appointment, and their capabilities are limited by the security of personal data. Whether it is worth waiting on the line to hear what you can already find on the site or in your account is up to you.

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services has made changes to its contact center to reduce the number of calls through its real-time help desk and is actively promoting other channels for questions and inquiries.

If many standard questions can be solved with the help of a bot, then more complex ones require the connection of a live consultant. How to do it?

To increase your chances of success, you need to target an autoresponder.

The call is directed to a USCIS representative/immigration officer only when necessary to resolve problems that an automated IVR system (IVR: Interactive Voice Response System) cannot resolve.

For assistance, call the agency toll-free at 1-800-375-5283

To get started, you need to have a basic understanding of how the USCIS helpline works before moving on to the process of contacting a customer service representative.

How to Contact USCIS Help Desk

The USCIS Help Desk is a two-tier structure: Customer Service Representatives (Tier I) and Immigration Services Officers (ISO) (Tier II).

On the subject: USCIS Significantly Expands Immigration Case Tracking: What Has Changed

In Level I, you talk to a customer service representative, and in Level II, you talk to an immigration officer.

Customer Service Representatives (Level I)

You will speak with a customer service representative when you contact USCIS. A customer service representative will be able to answer all your questions and provide detailed advice.

A customer service representative should assist you with appointments, paperwork, and technical issues. A customer service representative cannot give you legal advice or answer specific questions about your situation.

Immigration Officers (ISO) (Tier II)

The call will be directed to an immigration officer if the customer service representative is unable to assist you and decides that your matter is important enough.

You can resolve many more issues and get help on a specific case from an immigration officer. An immigration officer cannot review requests for evidence, send duplicate notices, or offer legal assistance.

You can also call regional offices or service centers. Find your nearest local USCIS office by link.

How can I talk to a live person at USCIS

You are ready to go ahead and talk to a live person now that you know who might be on the other end of the phone. However, you must use the automated voice assistance system to reach the consultant. USCIS processes tens of millions of applications and forms every year. They cannot answer every call personally. That's why they have this system.

The USCIS hotline is a telephone number where the automated system will help you. If the automated system cannot answer your questions, it will redirect the call to a live person.

USCIS Automated System

The automated system can be used to communicate with a consultant in the following ways.

Call 1-800-375-5283:

  • press 1 - for English (other languages ​​are available under other numbers);
  • press 2 to view the status of your case;
  • press 2 - if you cannot get the receipt number;
  • press 2 - to speak with a USCIS representative.

When you complete the above procedures, you will be added to a queue where you may have to wait 10 to 30 minutes for a representative to become available online. At the end of your wait, a Level I staff member (Customer Service Representative) will contact you.

Some ForumDaily subscribers claim that if you call the phone number and say the word Infopass, you will immediately be connected to a consultant.

USCIS Customer Service Menu

During a phone call, you will have the following choices:

  • press # to hear the latest news related to immigration;
  • press 1 to contact USCIS for application forms;
  • press 2 to see the status of the most recent petition you filed with USCIS;
  • press 3 to notify USCIS of the address change;
  • press 4 to find the nearest local USCIS office or application center;
  • press 5 to book an immigration medical examination;
  • press 6 - if you want to speak with a lawyer or a BIA employee;
  • press 8 if you are looking for information under the Freedom of Information Act.

Also, dial this number to report a possible immigration violation.

For all the more important information, press the asterisk (*) key.

After pressing the * key, you will be presented with the following options:

  • press 1 for a copy of the USCIS naturalization guide;
  • press 2 - to find out the data on the visa bulletin;
  • press 3 - to access the section with services for US residents only;
  • press 4 to access the service area for conditional residents, asylum seekers and LPRs;
  • press 5 to view temporary status information;
  • press 6 to access information about employers;
  • press 8 - if you encounter technical difficulties when submitting an electronic application form;
  • use the pound key (#) for details.

You must go through this section in this way until you are satisfied with the answers. Click the appropriate buttons if you have any questions and would like to speak with a representative. Each section will provide a key that will allow you to contact a live consultant.

Keep in mind that the call menu is updated frequently. Therefore, when you dial a number, you may hear different options.

How best to contact USCIS

Keep in mind that live support is not available 08/00. You must call at a specific time. Live customer service can be accessed from 21:00 to XNUMX:XNUMX Monday to Friday. This service is not available on weekends.

The interactive voice response system is available 24 hours a day. Even on weekends, IVR will help answer simple questions for most of the day.

The Most Common Reasons People Apply to USCIS

There are many reasons why someone might be trying to contact USCIS, but the most common ones are:

  • the main issues related to the visa;
  • problems with citizen application procedures;
  • visa status update requests;
  • inquiries about the schedule for filing applications for citizenship;
  • scheduling appointments for personal interviews;
  • support for technical failures on the USCIS website.

Things to Keep in Mind Before Calling USCIS

Before calling USCIS, you should:

  • check the status of your case or application online;
  • have all supporting documentation at hand;
  • check if the processing time of your case has been indicated;
  • take all your receipts with you.

Should you use the site or call the USCIS contact center first

The following are requests for which USCIS recommends that you contact them through their contact center:

  • when you need to change the date or time of an appointment or biometrics interview;
  • in an emergency, such as when you need an emergency travel permit or proof that you are a lawful permanent resident;
  • ask USCIS to expedite your case if any of the criteria for doing so apply;
  • any other questions that can't be answered online and really need live help.

How to prepare for a call to USCIS

Because it's not always easy to talk to a live person at USCIS, you should be prepared to take advantage of the opportunity when contacting you.

You can prepare for a call by doing the following:

  • take important notes and keep a pen and paper handy;
  • collect all the necessary data for the call, such as receipt numbers or registration numbers;
  • Plan extra time in your schedule to wait while you speak with a USCIS official.

There are a few details you should write down when you call:

  • before dialing the number, write down the day and time of the call;
  • note the name of the USCIS agent who is answering your call;
  • keep track of any reference numbers mentioned during the call;
  • respond to inquiries regarding forms;
  • call the immigration officer if necessary in certain circumstances.

Regardless of who you are talking to at USCIS, the representative cannot:

  • give legal advice;
  • make an appointment at regional offices;
  • forward the call to the regional office.

Other ways to contact USCIS

USCIS also has accounts in Facebook и Twitter.

You can contact them using their Twitter accounts. It is believed that Twitter has a faster response. For all USCIS contact details, look for link.

USCIS online account

Petitioners, petitioners, and representatives can use their USCIS online accounts to get personal, real-time information about their cases, 24 hours a day, from any device connected to the internet. Individuals can use the encrypted messaging feature to contact the USCIS Contact Center directly and receive email responses to their questions about a particular case. This is the easiest and most complete way to contact USCIS on individual cases. homeabroadinc.

Users note that this particular method of communication is the best for resolving issues.

Online messages

However, contact center employees are prohibited from providing information on a specific case to protect confidentiality. In addition, these messages are sent outside of a USCIS secure online account. So for convenient, fast, and efficient responses to inquiries on specific cases, the USCIS online account is the preferred way to contact the agency.

You may be interested in: top New York news, stories of our immigrants and helpful tips about life in the Big Apple - read it all on ForumDaily New York

Applicants who do not have an account can send messages and inquiries to the USCIS Contact Center and receive a response via email or phone within 24-48 hours.


USCIS offices may have special email boxes for specific questions about a pending petition or an application that has been resolved. To make sure that the request is sent correctly, the requester should examine all available information on the page "Contact us" USCIS before sending it.

When responding to e-mail requests for information on a specific case, USCIS staff should use their discretion as confidentiality and identification issues may arise.

Traditional mail and fax

Dedicated mailing addresses are available for the delivery of applications and petitions and responses to inquiries. In addition, specialized mailing addresses may be required for various USCIS processes. Postal addresses are available on the page "Find a USCIS Office" on the USCIS website.

USCIS does not provide a generic fax number. Although USCIS does not have its own fax numbers, offices can provide them when needed. You must not fax documents unless requested to do so by a USCIS officer.

Emma Virtual Assistant

Emma is a USCIS Virtual Assistant. Emma can answer general questions about immigration services and benefits, as well as direct visitors to the comprehensive website.

USCIS processes tens of millions of applications and receives hundreds of calls every day, making it almost impossible to talk to a live person on every call.

To get the information you need, USCIS staff advise you to first explore alternative approaches.

Most of the information is provided by USCIS and you can ask Emma Virtual Assistant for help.

If you need legal help, contact an immigration lawyer who is qualified to help you.

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