Immigration law in the United States can be very frustrating and confusing. The application process is difficult and can take what seems like forever. Even when you think you’ve given the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) everything they need, you may be asked for more.
What is a request for evidence?
Whether you are applying for a visa or for citizenship, your application will go to a USCIS officer for review. Their job is to look through your application thoroughly to ensure it meets the requirements of the various immigration laws. Sometimes, they discover that required information or documentation is missing or incomplete. Filling in these gaps is the purpose of a request for evidence (RFE).
If you receive an RFE, it’s easy to be a little afraid. But don’t panic, because it doesn’t mean your application is about to be refused. Simply respond to it in a timely manner, addressing the needs stated in the RFE.
The RFE you receive will identify what eligibility requirements you have not yet met and why the evidence you already submitted does not meet those requirements. If there is specific evidence missing, the RFE will tell you what that evidence is. It may also advise you of alternative types of evidence which could be used to fill in the gap left by the missing evidence. Finally, it will inform you of how much time you have to respond.
In some circumstances, it can be difficult to obtain the evidence necessary to comply with an RFE. When this is the case, don’t hesitate to seek the assistance of an experienced professional who knows immigration law. They can help you get the evidence you need to have your application approved.