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IMMIGRATION: USCIS Biometrics - What Is It For and What To Expect By Joey

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Hello everyone! In this week's article, I will be covering USCIS' biometrics or "ASC finger printing" appointment. "What is the purpose of this and what should I expect during the appointment?" are 2 questions that I am often asked when it comes to the biometrics service appointment.

What is Biometrics and Why Does USCIS Require It?

Biometrics is basically the capturing of an individual's identifying personal traits. Whenever you file an immigration application or petition such as a green card application, reentry permit, citizenship, etc, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will schedule you for biometrics at an Application Support Center nearest your location. USCIS will notify you of this appointment by sending you an "Application Support Center (ASC) Appointment Notice" on Form I-797C. This notice will include the date, time and location of your appointment. I recommend you show up about 30 minutes before your scheduled time.

USCIS will use the biometric data they capture to confirm your identity, as well as run a criminal background check on you.  This is necessary because USCIS must make sure that any immigration benefit that is given, is given to the right person.

The Biometrics Appointment

The biometric appointment is straightforward and usually pain free. You show up according to your scheduled time, date and location. Go through security, check-in, take a seat and wait for your name and/or A# to be called.  Once you are called, an immigration officer will capture your fingerprints, and/or photograph you, and then have you electronically sign.

NOTE: When you provide your digital signature during your biometrics, you are attesting that the information in your application, petition or request was complete, true and correct at the time of filing. If you had someone prepare your documents for you, make sure you had them sign where indicated at the time of filing. By the way, all attorneys and accredited representatives will sign not only those forms, but will attach a G-28 which notifies USCIS of their representation. I have personally seen many cases where someone hires a non-attorney, this person fills out the forms wrong, and when immigration notices this error and questions you, you have no idea what they are talking about because (1) you did not do it yourself, and (2) the person who did, did not sign and take responsibility for their error. For more of this and other warnings, read my article on the Sereechai website located at:, or a direct link on my website at: WWW.JC4LAW.COM.

Can I Make Any Changes, Updates or Corrections to My File During the Appointment?

Although you can not generally make any changes, updates or corrections to your file during the ASC appointment (unless its for race or ethnicity), you can do so at a later time. For example, if you legally changed your name (and this occurred after you filed your application or petition), you can provide this legal name change as "other evidence" on your online account, or make an appointment with USCIS to provide them of this change.


So there you have it! The basics of USCIS biometrics/ASC appointments. If you still have questions, you can always contact me to assist you. I've been providing my service to the Thai community for over 10 years.  Please do not hesitate to contact my office at (818) 846-5639 or (818) 231-5551.  If you have any questions you would like to be answered in future articles, please email me at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or see my website at: WWW.JC4LAW.COM for general information regarding this and many other topics in Business, Property and Family Law.

Disclaimer: The information contained herein have been prepared for informational purposes only and are not to be considered legal advice unless otherwise specified. If you have a specific question regarding your personal case, please contact the Law Offices of Joseph Chitmongran for a full consultation.