U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced delays of four to six weeks in sending out receipt notices after receiving properly filed applications and petitions with a USCIS lockbox. The agency said a variety of factors were to blame, including “COVID-19 restrictions, an increase in filings, current postal service volume and other external factors.” Among other things, USCIS said there may be “significant delays” in receipt notices for Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization, based on categories related to F-1 students.

USCIS said its lockbox workforce was working extra hours and redistributing its workload to minimize delays. “We do not anticipate any receipting delays that would result in a payment that is past its validity date,” the agency said. For those who have not yet filed an application, USCIS recommends filing online if possible, creating a USCIS online account to check case status, and completing a Form G-1145, E-Notification of Application/Petition Acceptance to request a text message and/or email when USCIS accepts the form via a lockbox.

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