If you already have a USCIS receipt number, you can check your case status at the USCIS.gov website. Your receipt number is a 13-character case number assigned to you by USCIS when your application was accepted. You can find the receipt number - starting with three letters such as SRC, LIN, etc. - usually on your Form I-797 Receipt Notice. Occasionally you may also see the number on other USCIS notices. If you have more than one case pending at USCIS, You can also check the status of multiple applications by registering an account at the official USCIS.GOV website.
Keep in mind that other U.S. government agencies, such as the Department of State (DOS), also handle immigration cases. These cases will not be found in the USCIS My Case Status system.
If the online status information is insufficient or unavailable, you may try other methods:
USCIS assigns a 13-character case number (receipt number) to each application. Here is an example: SRC-06-012-54321. Omit any dashes or spaces in the number when checking case status. For example, enter SRC0601254321 in the text box above. However, enter all other characters, including asterisks (*), if they are part of the receipt number.
A case number is structured like this: AAA-XX-YYY-Z-MMMM:
|AAA:||The service center or office that received your case.|
SRC - Texas Service Center (TSC, formerly Southern Regional Center)
LIN - Nebraska Service Center (NSC, Lincoln, NE)
WAC - California Service Center (CSC, formerly Western Adjudication Center)
EAC - Vermont Service Center (VSC, formerly Eastern Adjudication Center)
MSC - Missouri Service Center (MSC, transitioned to NBC)
NBC - National Benefits Center (NBC, for N-400 Naturalization and other cases)
|XX:||The fiscal year of USCIS, from October 1 to September 30. Cases filed from 10/01/2006 to 09/30/2007 will have xx = 07|
|YYY:||The working day of the fiscal year when your case is received. 10/01 = 001|
|Z:||This digit is part of a serial number but may have certain meanings for USCIS internal use.|
|MMMM:||A serial number assigned to your case based on the number of cases received, starting from 0001|
Your case number is printed on the I-797 receipt notice from USCIS. If you agreed to receive electronic notifications, the email to acknowledge the acceptance of your application/petition may also contain your receipt number.
The redesigned uscis.gov website launched on September 21, 2009 now shows seven adjudication stages. See this page for case status examples and processing steps.
Typically yes. The USCIS database is updated frequently and if there is a major status change in your case, you can expect to see it within a day or less.
Although major status changes, such as "approval notice sent," are provided by the system, certain information may not always be updated in the database. For example, USCIS may or may not change the case status if they have received your response to RFE (Request for Evidence). This is particularly frustrating for immigrants because responding to RFE is a time sensitive issue.
They may do so internally, but they don't display a log of status changes for your case. What you see in the status checking system is the last action taken by the USCIS. Sometimes you might see that the last updated date (LUD) changed, but the message (case status) remained the same.
Not really. Case numbers are not sorted by application type. If your I-485 case number ends with 54321, the next case 54322 may be an advanced parole which has a shorter processing window.
If your case has been pending and is now outside USCIS processing window, you can contact USCIS to inquire about the delay. The online checking system is very convenient, but does not tell you why it hasn't been approved.
USCIS stands for U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. USCIS is the official government agency that handles applications and petitions for immigration benefit. Under the Department of Homeland Security, USCIS inherited a large portion of the functions from the INS (Immigration and Naturalization Service), which ceased to exist on March 1, 2003. Keep in mind that most search engines will direct you to the official USCIS.gov website if you use keywords such as USCIS or INS. They can also handle certain misspelled words such as UCIS, USICS, USCIC, UCSIS, etc. However, if you typed something else make sure you are at the uscis.gov website before you submit sensitive information or make a payment.
Here is an example of a typical status update: