In a landmark move, US immigrants can now access green cards and Social Security numbers at the same time. The Biden administration recently announced a partnership between United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and the Social Security Administration (SSA) that will allow all lawful immigrants to apply for US permanent residency or green cards, plus their Social Security number (SSN).
In a press release issued by USCIS, the agency said: “This partnership will enable filing for lawful permanent resident status to apply for a SSN or replacement card as part of an adjustment of status application.”
Following the announcement of the partnership, the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published a new version of its Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, which now includes questions related to the SSN or card replacement request.
Commitment to US immigration system
Newly appointed USCIS director, Ur Jaddou, said: “This expansion of our partnership with the Social Security Administration illustrates our commitment to operating the US immigration system more efficiently to save applicants time.”
“Eliminating unnecessary bureaucracy and optimizing collaboration across public-serving agencies is a key priority for this agency and the Biden-Harris administration,” Jaddou added.
In a post on their official Twitter account, USCIS said: “Applicants filing for lawful permanent residence status can now apply for a Social Security number or replacement card using Form I-485, saving them a trip to a Social Security office.”
According to official figures, USCIS processes almost 576,000 Form I-485 every year. Once approved, applicants are granted a much sought after US green card, which allows them to live and work permanently in the US.
Form I-485 filing fee
The filing fee for Form I-485, which is currently $1,140 for most applicants, will not be increased, despite including Social Security card processing.
USCIS said that once a Form I-485 is approved, data will be transferred electronically to the SSA.
The USCIS press release stated: “Upon receiving the data, the Social Security Administration will automatically assign an original SSN or issue a replacement card, as appropriate.”
Restoring Faith in Our Legal Immigration Systems executive order
Following the signing of the ‘Restoring Faith in Our Legal Immigration Systems’ executive order by President Joe Biden, USCIS has been revoking many of the changes made to the US immigration system by former President Donald Trump, in an effort to make immigration processes easier for foreign nationals.
One of the most notable things reversed by the Biden administration was Trump’s controversial Public Charge rule, which blocked so-called ‘low income’ migrants from access to green cards.
Meanwhile, news of the partnership between USCIS and the SSA comes after Workpermit.com recently reported that more than 100,000 green cards could go to waste in 2021.
The green card quota for 2021 is 261,500, which is far higher than the usual 140,000. However, under US immigration laws, if the full quota of US employment-based visas isn’t issued by September 30 then those that aren’t used are ‘lost forever’.
Workpermit.com can help with US employment-based visas
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