Radlyn Mendoza is a USCIS Norfolk immigration office liaison, a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association and a member of the Virginia State Bar.
The Norfolk immigration office, located at 5678 East Virginia Beach Boulevard, is a USCIS field office that handles biometrics, interviews, and a variety of other services. The Norfolk office has, however, moved some of its application work to other field offices – and that means you may receive notices from other field offices that haven’t handled your case before.
Common Immigration Questions About the Norfolk Immigration Office
Many people who need to schedule appointments or services at the Norfolk office have a tough time getting information, so we’ve created this FAQ that includes answers to the most common questions.
Can I go to the USCIS office without an appointment?
You need an appointment for an in-person visit to the Norfolk U.S. Customs and Immigration Services field office. You have to schedule your appointment by phone – the office doesn’t accept walk-ins unless you’re an active duty military member who comes in during regular service hours.
How do I make an appointment with the Norfolk immigration office?
You must call the USCIS Contact Center at 800-375-5283 (or TTY at 800-767-1833) to schedule one. You can only schedule appointments by phone between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. Monday through Friday. If you’re currently outside the U.S., you can set your appointment online here.
How do I get InfoPass in 2019/2020?
InfoPass was an online service from USCIS that allowed people to schedule an appointment with an immigration officer in a field office. The new process is called InfoMod, and in order to get an appointment, you must call USCIS at 800-375-5283. When you call the 1-800 number for an in-office appointment in Norfolk, they will call you back within 72 hours so you have to be available to insure you don’t miss that call. If you do, you’ll have to start over by calling the 1-800 number. Also, please note that sometimes you never get the call-back. In short, you must be persistent.
Why can’t I make an InfoPass appointment?
Because InfoPass is now called InfoMod, and because the process includes more automation, it can be difficult to get an appointment. Typically, you must work through the automated phone system and ask to speak to an agent. You can ask the agent to help you schedule an appointment, and if he or she cannot or will not schedule one, you can ask to speak to a supervisor. Then, the supervisor may be able to help you schedule your appointment.
What happens if you miss your biometrics appointment for citizenship?
It’s a good idea to show up at all your scheduled biometrics appointment with USCIS. If you don’t show up, it can take the government longer to process your petition. When you miss a biometrics appointment, either because you never received your biometrics notice or because you simply couldn’t make it, you can reschedule it. In Norfolk, the Application Support Center , which handles biometrics and is located on the first floor will generally take a walk-in biometrics appointment if you have your notice with you. If you never received it, you will most likely have to call the 1-800# to get a new one.
If you receive your biometrics notice and know you cannot make the date and time, you can send the notice back in to USCIS on the address on your biometrics notice requesting a reschedule. Unfortunately, you cannot pick a specific rescheduling date.
Can you reschedule an immigration interview?
If you can’t make it to your N-400, adjustment of status or any other interview you may have at the Norfolk USCIS office, you can reschedule it. You would have to follow the instructions on the interview notice, which involves mailing the notice back in to USCIS and requesting a new interview and the reason. However, it’s in your best interest to do everything you can to make it on the originally scheduled date.
How long does it take to reschedule an immigration interview?
It typically takes between 6 and 8 weeks to reschedule a new immigration interview if you cancel your original appointment. You’ll get an interview cancellation notice in the mail with a new appointment notice. The amount of time between your original appointment and your new interview appointment varies based on how busy the Norfolk immigration office is.
Can I travel after a citizenship interview?
You can travel outside the U.S. after your citizenship/naturalization interview. You’ll still have your passport – the one issued to you by your country of origin – and you can use it for international travel. After you take your oath of allegiance and become a U.S. citizen, you can get a U.S. passport and use that to travel outside the country.
Can I postpone the oath ceremony?
If you can’t make it to your Naturalization Oath Ceremony, return the Form N-445 (Notice of Naturalization Oath Ceremony) to the Norfolk immigration office. Include a short explanation with the form to explain why you can’t go to the oath ceremony. You should save a copy of the letter before you send it. After USCIS receives your letter, it will reschedule your ceremony and send you a new Form N-445, which will include the date and time your ceremony will take place.
How do I get a temporary I-551 stamp?
You can get an I-551 stamp (also called an ARC stamp, which is short for “Alien Registration Card”) in your passport by scheduling an appointment with USCIS via the 1-800#, mentioned above. This temporary evidence of permanent resident status is necessary when you’re waiting for the government to process a new green card. It can take several weeks to get an I-551 stamp, so you should book an appointment as early as possible. Usually, the stamp is valid for 6 months to a year.
Do You Need to Talk to an Attorney or Work Through the Norfolk Immigration Office?
Many people navigating the U.S. immigration process rely on help from a Norfolk immigration attorney. Immigration law can be confusing and rules change frequently – so in many cases, the best choice is to work with someone who understands the process and stays on top of current changes.
Call us at 757-464-9224 to schedule a consultation with Gardner & Mendoza, PC. We will be able to help you through the process, particularly if you’re in an area served by the Norfolk immigration office, and we’ll be happy to give you case-specific legal advice when you need it.