Business petitions and applications such as I-129 NIV Petitions (various classifications), I-140 Petitions, I-526 and I-829 Petitions are still processed by using paper copies. This system fails to utilize readily available and widely used technological solutions. The U.S. CIS system which receives, processes, and requests additional information is inefficient, technologically primitive, and burdensome for both the immigrant and the United States Government
Most business-based nonimmigrant and immigrant visa petitions must be paper filed. In some instances the U.S. CIS allows electronic filing of the U.S. CIS forms but it does not provide for the option of submitting the supporting evidence electronically as well.
Once the petitioner or his or her attorney paper-files a business-based petition, the U.S. CIS will respond to the petitioner or his or her attorney via hard-copy mail (unless the case is filed via the U.S. CIS Premium Processing Service which requires additional $1,225 payment to the U.S. CIS). If additional evidence is requested by the U.S. CIS, the petitioner and/or the attorney is required to, in most if not all circumstances, file a response in hard-copy format to the U.S. CIS.
To better illustrate this process, let us take an example of a petitioner who decides to file Form I-129, Petition to Obtain L-1A Nonimmigrant Visa Status. Typically, the petitioner must take the following steps:
- Hard-copy file Form I-129 with supplements and supporting evidence;
- The U.S. CIS receives the hard-copy filing and mails a receipt;
- The U.S. CIS approves the case and/or mails a request for evidence;
- The petitioner then submits his or her response to the request for evidence (typically via hard-copy filing unless the case was filed via the U.S. CIS Premium Processing Service and is less than 20 pages long);
- The U.S. CIS denies or approves the case. If the case is approved, the petitioner still must wait for mailed approval notice (Form I-797) in order for the beneficiary to use it at the U.S. Consulate or a port of entry.
As shown above, the current system requires numerous hard-copy mailings/filings and back-and-forth paper correspondence between the U.S. CIS and the petitioner and/or his or her attorney.