According to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services a foreign citizen must be eligible under one of several categories to apply for legal permanent status through adjustment of status or consular processing. BY ESTHER MEDINA | DANIEL SHOER ROTH
Immigrants in the United States who request an adjustment of status to become legal permanent residents must use an indispensable form to show that there are no health issues that would deem the applicant inadmissible to the country.
It’s the obligatory — and sometimes feared — medical examination and vaccination record for immigration purposes. The results are presented to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) through Form I-693.
Until now, the form has remained valid for a maximum two-year-period that begins to count from the date it is signed by a USCIS designated civil surgeon. But the U.S. immigration agency is facing significant delays processing applications due to the coronavirus pandemic — so it has decided to temporarily extend the validity of Form I-693 from two to four years.
“We are making this temporary change because COVID-19 has caused processing delays and affected applicants’ ability to complete the required immigration medical examination,” immigration officials said in a news release.
The problem many green card applicants are facing is that by the time their immigration benefit is adjudicated, the I-693 is no longer valid.
To overcome this hurdle, the applicant has been required to obtain an updated medical report.
Immigration officials recommend that applicants schedule their medical exams as close as possible to the time they’ll submit their adjustment of status application with Form I-485 to receive a U.S. green card.
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