Green card applications are taking twice as long to process as stated on the USCIS website, according to an OIG report.
USCIS states that green card applications, the system of permanent U.S. residency for immigrants, should be completed within 120 days, but OIG found that the actual average processing time is more than double that.
The report also found that as well as not being a true reflection of processing times, the information on the USCIS site was also unclear.
OIG says that USCIS is trying to process green card applications within the 120-day timeframe but cannot due to factors outside of its control, therefore the goal is unrealistic.
“We believe USCIS is not meeting its 120-day goal because the goal itself is unrealistic given the complexity of adjudications and factors beyond USCIS’ control that affect the timeline,” says the report. “A goal that does not reflect operational realities contributes to unmet customer expectations and reduces trust in USCIS. ”
OIG recommends that the director of USCIS implement plans to present information on the agency’s website that more accurately reflects the length of the adjudication process for green card applications, so the website information is clear and helpful to stakeholders and reassesses the current green card application processing time goal of 120 days to determine whether it is reasonable and realistic and increase the timeframe if necessary.