USCIS Policies Updated Under Biden Administration

On June 9th, 2021, USCIS issued a series of new policy updates to allow the immigration policies to be more in line with the Biden Administration. Specifically, the Biden Administration aims to promote access to legal immigration and increase efficiency. The new policy updates affect expedited processing, Requests for Evidence (RFE), Notices of Intent to Deny (NOID), and employment authorization documents.

Expedited processing is a special service that allows USCIS to review cases on an accelerated timeline. It is reserved for those that USCIS considers require urgent adjudication. USCIS has updated their guidance who they considered might qualify for expedited processing. For example, urgent action is needed if it might cause severe financial loss to a company or person, emergencies and urgent humanitarian reasons, it is in the government interest, it is for a non-profit organization, or it is a clear USCIS error. More information on this new guidance can be found in the following link:

For RFE’s and NOID’s, USCIS is returning to their guidance outlined in 2013, turning away from guidance issued from 2018. In essence, it requires that immigration officers will need to issue an RFE or NOID when additional evidence could result in an approval. This is a change from the 2018 standard where immigration officers can simply deny a petition instead of first offering an RFE/ NOID first. As appealing a denial is much harder than providing more evidence for an RFE or NOID, this change will likely result in petitioners having a better chance at approval. “This updated policy will ensure that benefit requestors are given an opportunity to correct innocent mistakes and unintentional omissions.”

For Employment Authorization Documents, “USCIS will increase the current one-year validity period on both initial and renewal EADs to two years for certain adjustment of status applicants.” This change was implemented due to the growing amount of delays for adjustment of status applications. With around 370,000 adjustment of status related employment authorization requests in 2020, the extension of the validity period should reduce the number of applications received and improve processing time.

Overall, these changes implemented have been in line with a more legal immigration friendly U.S administration. These changes also serve to better streamline the process that in already in place. Here at Zhang and Associates, we have successfully represented thousands of non-immigrant and immigrant visas cases. We also understand that during this hectic time, your immigration needs are extremely important. If your needs are neglected, there can be very serious consequences that might disrupt your life. We also understand the importance of keeping up with the latest immigration news and law. If you have any questions or concerns regarding any immigration related issue, our seasoned staff will be happy to help. For a free evaluation on your case or situation, please email us at

Former U.S. Consular officer and
Visa Officer , Attorney Sechyi Laiu joined Zhang & Associates, P.C. on June 26, 2017

At Zhang & Associates, P.C., Attorney Laiu specializes on Consular Processing cases and business development. Attorney Laiu also focuses on TN visas, E visas, CBP administrative proceedings (monetary confiscation, deferred inspection), and overseas financial compliance.

Prior to joining Zhang & Associates, P.C., Attorney Laiu worked for the U.S. Department of State as a Chinese and Portuguese speaking diplomat. As a consular-coned officer who served in Vancouver (Canada), Shenyang (P.R. China), and Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Attorney Laiu processed over 30,000 visa cases and worked in every section of Consular Affairs overseas (Fraud Prevention Unit, Immigrant Visas, Non-Immigrant Visas, and American Citizen Services).

He uses his experience and expertise to deliver the highest quality of service to our clients.

Founded in 1996, Zhang & Associates, P.C. offers legal services to clients worldwide in all aspects of U.S immigration law. We have successfully handled over ten thousand immigration cases.

At Zhang & Associates, P.C., our attorneys and supporting professionals are committed to providing high-quality immigration and non-immigration visa services. We specialize in NIW, EB-1, PERM, I-485 I-130, H-1B, O, L and J cases. In the past over twenty years, we have successfully helped over ten thousand clients get green cards. If you plan to apply for a green card, please send your CV to Attorney Jerry Zhang ( for a free evaluation.

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