The 2021 Annual Ombudsman’s Report Highlights Ongoing USCIS Processing Issues with Removing Conditions on Residence

The Office of the USCIS Ombudsman issued its 2021 Annual Report for calendar year 2020. In it, the Ombudsman’s office has identified many operations issues including those faced by foreign nationals who have filed to remove conditions on their residence.

The report discussed USCIS long delays in processing petitions to remove conditions on residence which were made worse by the COVID-19 pandemic, and noted that the processing time periods for such cases are well in excess of those provided for by statute.  It made several recommendations, suggesting that USCIS extend the validity period of temporary evidence while the petition is pending, that USCIS change how some cases are selected for interview waiver by using a risk-based assessment, and that USCIS establish a new format for foreign nationals who concurrently file to remove conditions on residence and file to naturalize.  Each has the goal of increasing agency efficiency and limiting negative affects of USCIS delays on those who make such filings.