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Facts and Myths About Filing Petitions/Applications at USCIS Overseas Office in Delhi, India

Facts and Myths About Filing Petitions/Applications at USCIS Overseas Office in Delhi, India

Lal Varghese, Attorney at Law, Dallas

This article is intended to shed light on the myths and facts about USCIS overseas offices and their authority to process petitions/applications. These services are available to both U. S citizens and lawful permanent residents within the jurisdiction of the New Delhi USCIS office. The Director is Dimple Dhabalia (Acting), and the New Delhi Field Office has jurisdiction over U.S. immigration matters in the following countries: Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, and Afghanistan. Street Address of this office is American Embassy, Shantipath, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi - 110 021, India. The Mailing Address from the US is: Field Office Director, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Department of Homeland Security, American Embassy, Shantipath, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi, India - 110 021. If you would like send applications/petitions or documents by courier service the street address should be used. Field Office Director, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Department of Homeland Security, American Embassy, Shantipath, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi, India 110 021.

The USCIS office is located in the diplomatic enclave of New Delhi, an area where many other embassies and high commissions are located. Please use the public entrance access from the West Building. The office is open to the public Monday through Friday from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM. It is closed on Indian and American holidays. Phone number for general inquiries in Hindi, Punjabi, or English are as follows: If calling from U. S. S., please dial 011-91-11 then dial for I-730 applications please call: 2419-8506, for I-130 applications please call: 2419-8154, for I-600 applications please call: 2419-8639. This office does not process immigrant visas and you should contact the Immigrant Visa processing unit of the U. S. Consulate directly at 2419-8062 or 2419-8374. For specific case inquiries, a fax is preferable. The fax numbers are (Country Code 91) + (City Code 11) + 2419-8347 or 2419-8730. If calling from the United States, please dial 011 first. The Email address is CIS.NDI@dhs.gov. No appointment is necessary to visit the USCIS New Delhi field office. Based on the requirements of an applicant, an appointment may be made with a U.S. Immigration Officer, usually on the same day. Walk-ins are accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. Walk-ins and appointments are accommodated from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM. The fees for all applications and petitions submitted to this office must be paid with either Indian Rupees, U.S. dollars, or cashier's checks made payable to the American Embassy New Delhi. Personal checks are not accepted.

The abandonment of lawful permanent resident status is irrevocable. An individual who relinquishes lawful permanent resident status must qualify again for such status. Therefore, one should give careful thought to abandoning lawful permanent resident status. If you wish to abandon your permanent residence and relinquish your Permanent Resident Card (Green Card), please contact us by phone or in writing for further instructions how to file I-407. The New Delhi Field Office accepts Form I-600 from the following petitioners: Applicants whose Form I-600A has been approved stateside, then forwarded to and received by this office will need: Form I-600 signed by both Petitioners and submitted in person by the U.S. Petitioner, Affidavit of Birth and Abandonment issued by an Orphanage and/or certificate of Abandonment issued by the Juvenile Welfare Board in India and/or Relinquishment Deed signed by the parent(s), Court Order granting legal custody or approving adoption, Copy of Adoption Deed and fee receipt indicating that the original has been submitted to the Sub-registrar's Office in India for registration (applicable only for Hindus if they adopt in India), Proof that all pre-adoption requirements have been met (if incomplete on Form I-600A). Information on international adoptions may be found at the Department of State and on the USCIS online website at How Do I Apply to Bring a Foreign-Born Orphan to the United States?

U.S. citizens, who reside locally, are eligible to file Forms I-130, ''Immediate Relative Immigration Petitions'', for spouses, parents, and unmarried children under 21 by coming to the office during normal business hours. The normal processing time is one week. The petitioner must comply with all instructions on the Form I-130. The petitioner must submit originals for all documents with copies (originals will be returned). The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services at the U.S. Embassy in New Delhi accepts I-130 petitions from U.S. citizens who reside in India. U.S. citizens whose principal residence is not in India, and/or are abroad temporarily as a visitor or on business, must file the petition in the United States. If you are not eligible to file in New Delhi, you should file the petition with the U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Service Center having jurisdiction over your place of residence or last residence in the United States. Lawful Permanent Residents must file the petition in the United States. Proof of such residency will include a U.S. passport with an appropriate long-term, valid Indian visa and a Registration Report and Residential Permit issued by the Foreigner’s Regional Registration Office (FRRO) of the Government of India. Additional evidence should include, but is not limited to, on-going employment in India, taxes paid in India, rent/property receipts, and utility receipts in India.
 United States Citizens may file their petitions between 08:30 a.m. to 01:00 p.m. on all normal business days i.e. Monday through Thursday. United States Citizens MUST BE PRESENT to file their petitions. If a United States Citizen is filing for a spouse, it is recommended that the spouse also appear so that immigration officials may ask any questions necessary for the adjudication of the petition.

U.S. immigration offices overseas do not accept or process Naturalization applications from U.S. Lawful Permanent Residents (LPRs) that live overseas. See the USCIS Website on Naturalization for eligibility criteria and proper filing procedures. The New Delhi Field Office does not issue Humanitarian parole. Instructions on how to file an application for Humanitarian Parole are located on Form I-131. The address that you should send the completed Form I-131 is: Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Attn: Chief, International Operations Division, (Humanitarian Parole), 20 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Suite 3300, Washington, DC 20529-2100. To expedite the processing, the use of express mailing is recommended.

The New Delhi Field Office does not issue or extend Re-Entry Permits. Applicants who have requested that their Re-Entry Permits be sent overseas, for delivery at the New Delhi Field Office, will be sent a call-in letter that requests them to collect their permit, upon presentation of their passport and Alien Registration Card. Instructions on how to obtain or replace a Re-Entry Permit are found at Emergency Travel. The New Delhi office does not directly receive refugee resettlement applications. These applications should be filed with the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) in New Delhi. Any inquiries on previously rejected refugee applications must be addressed to USCIS in the Embassy. For general information and processing criteria please see the Department of State and elsewhere on the USCIS website.

Form I-601 must be filed with the Consular Office where an applicant is applying for an immigrant visa. Special Registration is a program of the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) of the Department of Homeland Security. The New Delhi Field Office does not issue Transportation Letters for a Lawful Permanent Resident of the United States, who is not in possession of his/her Alien Registration Card (Form I-551/I-151). Please contact U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) at the U.S. Embassy New Delhi if your Alien Registration Card has been lost, stolen or is expired.

Disclaimer: Lal Varghese, Attorney at Law does not claim authorship for above referenced information. Lal Varghese, Attorney at Law or the publisher is not responsible or liable for anything stated above, since it is generalized information about the subject matters collected from various sources including Department of Homeland Security, Department of Justice, State Department, Federal Register, and American Immigration Lawyer’s Association (AILA) Advocacy Center, and other legal sources. For individual cases and specific questions you are advised to consult an attorney of your choice or contact the agencies mentioned above. You can visit our website at: www.indiaimmigrationusa.com or www.indiaimmigrationusa@yahoogroups.com for more information about other related immigration matters.

URL: www.indiaimmigrationusa.com

EMAIL: attylal@aol.com

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