June 20, 2013

Foreign nationals or green card holders often move to a new address for different reasons; accepting a new job, going to school at a new city, getting married, etc... Visa and green card holders must notify USCIS about the change of address within 10 days. This is done by filing the Form AR-11. This form contains simple questions and can be accessed at USCIS’s website at www.uscis.gov There is a penalty if USCIS is not notified about the change of address.

Form AR-11 must be filled out and sent via Certified Mail (with Return Receipt Requested) to:

U.S Department of Homeland Security
Citizenship and Immigration Services
Attn: Change of Address
1344 Pleasants Drive
Harrisonburg, VA 22801

The Form AR-11 can also be filled out electronically on USCIS’s website at www.uscis.gov

Like all other immigration paperwork, it is important to keep a copy of the filled-out AR-11 form as wells as proof of delivery to USCIS in your records.

Information provided on Form AR-11 can be used for other statistical reasons or to update records. USCIS has authority to share this information with Federal, State, Local or Foreign lawful authorities.

It is very important to note that if there are any pending applications with USCIS (such as an H-1B extension application, a green card application, etc…) filling out the Form AR-11 does not itself update the address on the pending applications. When there is a pending application, USCIS needs to be notified separately for each pending form type. To do this, go to the USCIS website and search for the address change page. By using the receipt number assigned for each form type, update the address for each application. This is especially important for applicants who have pending applications for work visas, travel documents or green cards. That being said, considering the importance of immigration documents being delivered to the correct address at all times, it would be the best practice to postpone moving plans until all the pending applications are adjudicated. If the address change is not updated properly in each form type, your documents may be delivered to your prior home address.

Remzi Guvenc Kulen, Esq.