Phase 1: The first phase of this requirement starts on April 30, 2018. This phase affects documents that must be re-mailed because they have been returned by USPS as “non-deliverable”; these documents include Travel Booklets, Employment Authorization Cards, and Permanent Resident Cards (a.k.a. Green Cards). These crucial immigration documents oftentimes do no reach their intended recipient and are returned as non-deliverable when mailed using USPS first-class mail, which does not provide a tracking number. If you are an applicant who has changed their address during the application process with USICS, then there is a greater chance your documents have been returned as non-deliverable and will need to be re-mailed using the more secure Signature Confirmation Restricted Delivery service.
Under this new delivery method:
- The applicant must show identification to sign for their documents upon delivery;
- The applicant can also chose to designate an agent to sign for their document on their behalf (to do so, the intended recipient must complete the PS Form 3801 (Standing Delivery Order) or PS Form 3801-A (Agreement by a Hotel, Apartment House, or the Like);
- The applicant has the option to sign up for USPS Informed Delivery to receive delivery status notifications (note: this Informed Delivery option is not offered for every ZIP Code and address); and
- The applicant also has the option to arrange pickup of the documents at a post office at a specified date and time by selecting the “Hold for Pickup” option on the USPS website
Phase 2: USICS plans to eventually expand the required usage of the Signature Confirmation Restricted Delivery service to all important immigration documents. However, no specific date has been set yet.
While this change to a new delivery method may seem like a minute housekeeping or administrative point, it is absolutely not. Here at the immigration law firm of Kuck | Baxter Immigration Partners, we’ve seen applicants miss out on certain immigration benefits or have their applications delayed or rejected altogether for administrative reasons such as improper signatures or failure to follow procedural directions to a T.