US immigration benefits system begins process of moving online

US immigration benefits system begins process of moving online
Published:  5 Jun at 6 PM
The US Citizenship and Immigration Service has started the first stage of its new online immigration benefits system.

The new-look system, the USCIS ELIS, has been developed to modernise the adjudicating and filing immigration benefits process. Individuals will be able to create an account and make an online application to change or extend their non-immigrant status for particular visa types.

Those who will be eligible include foreign nationals who travel to the country temporarily to study, receive medical treatment, conduct business or visit on holiday. USCIS ELIS will also allow USCIS officers to adjudicate and review online filings from various agency locations across the US.

Historically, USCIS customers have been made to apply for the majority of benefits by mail, with USCIS workers then reviewing paper files and sending documents between offices for their adjudication to be completed. The new system marks a necessary step forward and will be the first of a number of releases.

Releases in the coming weeks and months will add functions and form types to the system, eventually expanding to cover all the USCIS’s filing and adjudication for immigration benefits. Officials described it as an important transition for the US’s immigration benefits system, but said it will take time and dedication to ensure it is fully and properly implemented.