With few exceptions, a USCIS change of address is required of registered aliens, especially if they have a pending case with the U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services. If you don't report an address change to the USCIS, you might not receive important notices or updates on your application.
Here is how you make a USCIS address change.
Note the date on the calendar when you're set to move.
Choose a date for your move to a new residence. Do make sure you can make a USCIS change of address within 10 days of the move. This is required by law, as waiting too long could result in you not receiving updates in a timely manner.
Get your current USCIS case receipt number.
Check the last official receipt you received from the U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services for your case number. Look for a 13-digit alphanumeric identificaiton number that begins with three letters. That's your USCIS case number. You can find it in the payment check too if you paid your USCIS fee that way.
Go to the USCIS websiite and fill out form AR-11 Change of Address.
Download form AR-11 from the USCIS website. Fill it out with all the required information. Enter your USCIS case number, the date you last entered the country and the Port of Entry where you came in. Make sure you enter your new address correctly. Print out the information or save to PDF so you have a copy of the paper.
Call the USCIS to notify them of your address change.
For pending applications, the current number is 1-800-375-5283. (See the "Resources" link to the National Customer Service Center.) Follow the prompts. You will get an operator on the phone to update your address information for you. Tell the operator you have changed your address online with form AR-11 and that you are now reporting the same to them. Ask if you will receive a notice by mail for this (probably not). The operator may advise you to snail mail them also so you will get a receipt confirmation.
Mail a copy of your form AR-11 to the USCIS service center with jurisdiction over your new residence.
Check with the USCIS website or USCIS forms for the local service center with jurisdiction over your new home, if you moved to a different state. If you mail your address change by snail mail, you will receive a notice of receipt, unlike with the online service.
Wait for the notice of receipt of your USCIS change of address.
In a week or two, you should receive a letter from the USCIS service center. It should indicate your new address as entered in your form AR-11. Note that you will probably NOT receive a notice of receipt if you filed the AR-11 online only.
- USCIS might not update your address on file on time, either because they're slow or something is lacking in the way you filed. Refer to the official instructions in the "Resources" list below, then follow up via phone.
- Don't forget! If you have a sponsor who filed an I-864 for you during your visa application, that person must also make a USCIS change of address. Use form I-865.
- Make sure you ask for a USCIS address update within 10 days after you move.
- You can download, fill out and/or print the USCIS forms from the official website.
- Don't rely on the online AR-11 alone if you have a pending case.
- Go to your local post office and get an address change there as well. If a letter from the USCIS comes before the agency gets to update your file, UPS will forward the mail to your new home.
- ewebwriter, eHow writer - (C) 2010