Interfiling Medical Exams for I-485 Filings
USCIS requires that certain individuals seeking immigration benefits, such as permanent residence, must “establish that he or she is not inadmissible on health-related grounds.” Form I-693 is used by I-485 applicants to show they “are free from any conditions that would render them inadmissible under the health-related grounds.”
USCIS states that a medical examination, or completed Form I-693, is valid for 60 days after the civil surgeon physician signs the form. Once submitted to USCIS within the 60-day period, the exams will remain valid for up to 2 years while USCIS adjudicates your Form I-485.
What happens if you didn’t submit your medical form with your I-485?
You have a few options for submitting your Form I-693 after your I-485 has already been filed. Most commonly, USCIS will request the medicals when your case is in the final stages of adjudication by issuing a Request for Evidence (RFE). The I-485 applicant can submit the medical exams to the address on the RFE. You can also bring your medical exams with you if you are scheduled for an in-person interview at a USCIS field office.
In recent months, we have seen some employment-based cases approved without an interview at the field office. If you see that USCIS is processing cases near your priority date and your case may be nearing adjudication, you can also choose to “interfile” or mail USCIS your medical exams to have them linked to your case ahead of an RFE.
What are the risks of interfiling my medical exams?
The main risk is that USCIS may not be able to locate your file and attach the medical exams in a timely manner. For example, if the file has been transferred to a field office and you send your medicals to the service center, there could be a delay in connecting the documentation with your case. If your medical exams are lost or not connected within 60 days, you may have to pay the fees to obtain a new set of medical exams and send to USCIS when requested in an RFE or when you are scheduled for an interview.
Tips for Interfiling Medicals
1. Confirm the actual location of your case with USCIS.
After checking your case status on your USCIS portal, you can also chat with Emma on the USCIS website (an automated tool that could also connect you to an agent for a live chat) or speak with someone at the USCIS Contact Center to ensure the location of your case.
2. Check the mailing address for the location.
If you have not received an RFE requesting the medical exams, you need to check the acceptable mailing addresses for the appropriate service center or field office. The USCIS website has an office locator function, in addition to listing the direct filing addresses for Form I-485.
3. Include your case details and prepare the package for filing.
Make sure you have your I-485 receipt numbers and medical exams dated within the last 60 days. Include a copy of the G-28 if applicable. Download a sample medicals cover letter.
4. Ship the medicals with a trackable delivery service.
Use a delivery service that provides tracking numbers so that you can confirm the date and time of arrival. Keep a record of the confirmation delivery with your files.
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