Possible Mass-Furloughs at USCIS Could Severely Impact Services13 Jul 2020
Last week, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) sent out notices to more than two-thirds of its employees that they may be furloughed, effective August 3, 2020. The USCIS is seeking $1.2 billion in emergency funding from Congress; if this is not granted, the furloughs will likely proceed, and most of the services provided by the USCIS will inevitably come to a virtual halt.
Funding for USCIS
The USCIS is almost entirely funded by the filing fees required for most types of applications and petitions. The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in a sharp decrease in the number of cases filed with the USCIS, resulting in a massive budget shortfall. To resolve an emergency budget issue, the White House Office of Management and Budget normally would send a detailed request to Congress for the emergency funding. However, the Trump Administration has failed to do so, instead merely sending a one-page letter that provides no details, or even a specific dollar figure of the funding required. It appears the Administration would be perfectly content with the USCIS having to largely stop providing services.
It is very difficult to determine what could happen if these furloughs were to go forward. But, suffice to say that it would severely impact operations and dramatically increase processing times. Still, there is some indication that Congress may be able to resolve this matter before the August 3rd deadline. MurthyDotCom will post an update on this important matter once new information becomes available.
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