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This Week in Immigration News: USCIS Workload Transfers, International Immigration Office Update, and H2A/H2B Eligible Countries

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Welcome back to Visalawyerblog! In this post, we bring you the latest immigration news for the week.

USCIS Announces Workload Transfers

In an effort to manage heavy workloads, increase efficiency, and decrease processing times, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has been transferring cases between service centers.

On January 17, 2019, USCIS announced the transfer of certain I-130 Petitions for Immediate Relatives of U.S. Citizens from the Nebraska Service Center to the Potomac Service Center, Texas Service Center, California Service Center, and Vermont Service Center

USCIS has also transferred certain I-130 Petitions for F2A spouses and children of permanent residents from the California Service Center to the Potomac Service Center, Texas Service Center, Nebraska Service Center, and Vermont Service Center.

USCIS has also transferred certain I-485 Petitions for U-based non-immigrants from the Vermont Service Center to the Nebraska Service Center.

USCIS has also transferred certain I-751 Petitions from the Texas Service Center to the Potomac Service Center.

Finally, USCIS has transferred certain I-751 Petitions from the Vermont Service Center to the Potomac Service Center.

How do I know if my case was transferred?

If your case was transferred, USCIS will send you a transfer notice in the mail notifying you of the action taken by USCIS. Your receipt number will remain the same, and the transfer will not delay the processing of your case.

If you need to send correspondence to USCIS with regard to a pending petition, you should continue to file such correspondence according to the form instructions in the section “Where to File” of the Form instructions.

USCIS International Immigration Office Closures

Last year we reported the intended closure of the 23 USCIS International Offices around the world, beginning with the USCIS International Office in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico and Manila, Philippines.

Since then, USCIS has announced its plans to maintain operations at seven international field offices abroad including: two in China (Beijing and Guangzhou), one in Kenya (Nairobi), one in India (New Delhi), one in Guatemala City, one in Mexico City, and one in San Salvador.

All remaining international offices around the world will close as planned.

DHS Notice of H-2A and H-2B Eligible Countries for 2020

On January 17, 2020, DHS published a notice in the Federal Register outlining the list of 84 countries whose nationals are eligible to participate in the H-2A program, and the 81 countries whose nationals are eligible to participate in the H-2B Program. These designations will be effective from January 19, 2020 to January 18, 2021. The countries eligible are the same as those from 2019.

For a complete list of eligible countries please click here.