USCIS Application Support Center: A Guide
Posted by Frank Gogol
If you’ve filed for immigration or a change of status with the USCIS recently, you must have been asked to get in touch with an Application Support Center at least once in your application process. This might have you wondering why they are so important and what they do besides processing your application.
In this article, we’ll explain what these centers do behind the scenes and their importance in the immigration process, among other important details.
Table of Contents
What Is an Application Support Center?
Immigration into the U.S. is a complex and lengthy procedure. When you submit an application with the USCIS, it works with multiple other organizations to process your documents after running verification and background checks.
As an applicant, you may need specialized services; the USCIS has different centers for each process:
- Application Support Centers for providing fingerprinting services
- Asylum Offices for handling scheduled interviews
- Service Centers for receiving and processing all applications
- National Benefit Centers which provide more or less the same services as Service Centers
- Local offices that schedule interviews and providing additional, supplementary services
- National Records Center for receiving and processing FOIA applications
What Services Do USCIS Application Support Centers Offer?
As you can see from the list above, Application Support Centers provide fingerprinting services to USCIS. You’ll go to the Support Center for your biometric verification.
Some applications require you to make a biometric verification appointment with the USCIS. You will receive the notice after you have filed your application or petition. This part of the process is handled by the Application Support Center.
The information you need to provide at the center depends on the Notice Code you receive. You can receive any of three codes:
- Code 1 – Fingerprinting for 10 prints only
- Code 2 – Index finger press-print, along with photo and signature
- Code 3 – Fingerprinting for 10 prints, index finger press-print, photo, and signature
As your case proceeds, your appointment will be scheduled at an ASC. You must appear at the required time, or you will delay your case, and you will have to repeat the entire process. This might also lead to the denial of your application or petition.
You are allowed to make your own appointments for certain services. All you need to do is follow the instructions provided.
An accommodation is a modification in the USCIS procedure that allows a qualified yet disabled individual to participate in programs and access benefits. It is important to mention here that accommodations do not exempt individuals from meeting the requirements but modify the requirements a bit, depending on their disability and needs. You can request an accommodation here.
USCIS Service and Office Locator
Application Support Centers are present in every U.S. state and territory. To locate the office in your state, please visit this link.
How to Use the USCIS Service and Office Locator
Navigating and using the office locator website is really simple. You just need to enter your ZIP code, and the portal will show you the support center that’s nearest to you.
Can I Change My USCIS Service Center?
Unfortunately, you cannot. These centers are allocated to you based on jurisdiction and convenience. So you’d have to stick to the center for the entire time of your application process.
Can I Go to a USCIS Office without an Appointment?
All in-person visits to the USCIS office require appointments. These can be made either via mail or by phone. Visiting the office without an appointment will result in either a long wait or the possible rejection of your request. But you can definitely speak with someone over the phone regarding any issues or concerns you may have.
When you visit a USCIS Application Support Center, it’s important that you arrive on time, or preferably a few hours early. This will help you get things done smoothly and quickly.