USCIS Adds Online Virtual Assistant, Emma

The USCIS has improved their website with the addition of a virtual assistant named Emma. This is an effort to facilitate the public’s ability to navigate the USCIS WebSite and gain access to general immigration information. Named after Emma Lazarus, author of the poem at the base of the Statue of Liberty, Emma can be found at She functions through a dialog box that opens when Ask a Question is clicked. This is currently located in the upper right corner of the USCIS home page.

In our experience testing Emma at the Murthy Law Firm, she answers quickly by directing the user to the appropriate USCIS webpage. The USCIS announcement indicates that Emma’s ability to answer questions will expand over time, based on the questions asked.

Future Expansion Plans

Emma is currently available only in English, and is accessible on laptop and desktop computers. The USCIS expects to expand availability to mobile devices in the near future and to offer this service in Spanish.


A helpful mechanism for finding information on the USCIS WebSite, Emma should cut down on general information calls to the USCIS National Customer Service Center. Of course, this type of system cannot provide case-specific guidance, and should not be viewed as a substitute for qualified legal advice.


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Disclaimer: The information provided here is of a general nature and may not apply to any specific or particular circumstance. It is not to be construed as legal advice nor presumed indefinitely up to date.