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Old Jun 16th 2011, 10:18 pm   #1
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Default "DCF" Ends August 15 2011

First of all, this will not directly affect people filing I-130 in London.
This is about 'real' Direct Consular Filing, to a Consulate abroad. Filing to overseas USCIS offices will not change.

USCIS Centralizes Filing of Form I-130

Improved Process for Petitioners Abroad will Increase Efficiency and Flexibility
Released May 16, 2011
WASHINGTON - U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) today announced that effective Aug. 15, 2011, petitioners residing in countries without USCIS offices will be able to file a Petition for an Alien Relative (Form I-130), with the USCIS Chicago Lockbox facility. This will increase the efficiency of the relative petition filing process and give USCIS more flexibility in managing its workload. Previous regulations permitted these petitioners, who comprise about 5 percent of all I-130 petitioners, to file with USCIS or the U.S. Department of State at their local U.S. embassy or consulate.

Under the new regulation, published today in the Federal Register, petitioners residing in countries without USCIS offices may file a Petition for an Alien Relative based on the addresses provided in the revised form instructions, also available on www.uscis.gov:

<address snip>

Petitioners residing in a country with a USCIS office have the option of sending their I-130 forms to the Chicago Lockbox, or they may file their Forms I-130 at the international USCIS office having jurisdiction over the area where they live.

To enable a smooth transition, petitioners should continue to file at their local U.S. embassy or consulate through Aug. 14, 2011. Beginning Aug. 15, petitioners residing abroad must file according to the new instructions.
--------------------------------

What changes for US citizens resident in the UK?
Immediately, nothing obvious, but common sense tells us to 'watch this space'. Other changes could be forthcoming. Already we have seen London USCIS change their projected processing time from the (long standard) 5-6 months out to 10 months:

Planning Ahead
"U.S. petitioners who are planning on filing for their foreign spouses/children for immigrant visas to relocate to the United States should file the Petition for Alien Relative (Form I-130) a minimum of ten (10) months prior to the date of the plan relocation."

If you are interested in filing a petition for your spouse/children to USCIS London, you should click through that link and read the other criteria for filing abroad. If you are found ineligible to file in London, you will be directed to file to the US.
--------------------------------

So what's it all about?
We debated a few ideas when this idea was first floated: DCF: The End is Nigh?
We were all wrong, it about the money. And maybe electronic document submission.

http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2011...2011-11997.pdf
"DHS will achieve cost-savings by changing the location of filing Petitions for Alien Relatives. The current practice of requiring or permitting petitioners who live outside the United States to file a relative petition at DOS consular
offices is inefficient and requires reimbursement. USCIS has reached an agreement, as required by law, with the DOS Consular Service for the provision of lockbox and receipting services and must reimburse DOS for the costs of those services. See 31 U.S.C. 1535.
USCIS is able to receive these petitions at a lower cost than DOS charges USCIS. USCIS cannot realize these cost savings until the regulations eliminate the option of filing with DOS consular offices by petitioners who live outside the United States. See 8 CFR 204.1(e).
This final rule removes those filing provisions. This change will reduce inefficiencies, improve the ability of USCIS to manage its workload, and reduce the burden on DOS."

That Federal Register entry is a bit dense, but is worth reading in its entirety, for people who are interested in this sort of thing.
----------------------------

Locations of USCIS Offices overseas:

Our Locations: USCIS International Field Offices

USCIC has 30 offices located around the world, covering a geographic jurisdiction that includes nearly 200 foreign states.

Mexico City District
* Mexico City
* Ciudad Juárez
* Tijuana
* Monterrey
* San Salvador
* Panama City
* Tegucigalpa
* Guatemala City
* Lima
* Santo Domingo
* Kingston
* Port-au-Prince
* Havana

Rome District
* Rome
* Johannesburg
* Nairobi
* Athens
* Accra
* Vienna
* Moscow
* Frankfurt
* London

Bangkok District
* New Delhi
* Ho Chi Minh City
* Hong Kong
* Guangzhou
* Seoul
* Beijing
* Bangkok
* Manila

My note: If you are a US citizen resident in one of the above districts, you will file I-130 at the USCIS office abroad. MOST of us on this board will fall into one of these cities.
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Old Jul 2nd 2011, 3:20 pm   #2
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Default Re: "DCF" Ends August 15 2011

Quote:
Originally Posted by meauxna View Post
Improved Process for Petitioners Abroad will Increase Efficiency and Flexibility
Who said that government people do not have a sense of humor?
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Old Jul 2nd 2011, 6:12 pm   #3
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Default Re: "DCF" Ends August 15 2011

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Originally Posted by S Folinsky View Post
Who said that government people do not have a sense of humor?
I know, right?
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