最近 government shutdown，有读者问：不知道 USCIS 现在办公吗，这个部门是否在关闭之列呢？
除了 EB-5 区域中心计划因没有授权而暂时中止外（参见这篇文章解释），移民局的绝大部分功能不受影响，至于原因……你还记得自己提交申请时的 filing fee 吗？移民局处理外国人的事务，美国纳税人并不会为你买单；USCIS 的主要收入来源是申请人交纳的处理费（每份申请动辄几百甚至上千美元），联邦政府没有财政预算对他们影响不大。
The current lapse in annual appropriated funding for the U.S. government does not affect USCIS’s fee-funded activities. Our offices will remain open, and all individuals should attend interviews and appointments as scheduled. USCIS will continue to accept petitions and applications for benefit requests, except as noted below.
Some USCIS programs, however, will either expire or suspend operations, or be otherwise affected, until they receive appropriated funds or are reauthorized by Congress. These include:
- EB-5 Immigrant Investor Regional Center Program (not the EB-5 Program). Regional centers are a public or private economic unit in the U.S. that promotes economic growth. USCIS designates regional centers for participation in the Immigrant Investor Program. The EB-5 Program will continue to operate.
- E-Verify. This free internet-based system allows businesses to determine the eligibility of their employees to work in the U.S.
- Conrad 30 Waiver Program for J-1 medical doctors. This program allows J-1 doctors to apply for a waiver of the two-year residence requirement after completing the J-1 exchange visitor program. The expiration only affects the date by which the J-1 doctor must have entered the U.S.; it is not a shutdown of the Conrad 30 program entirely.
- Non-minister religious workers. This special immigrant category allows non-ministers in religious vocations and occupations to immigrate or adjust to permanent resident status in the U.S. to perform religious work in a full-time, compensated position.