U.S. Customs and Border Protection will institute a pilot program for electronic filing of I-192 Nonimmigrant Waiver and I-212 Application for Permission to Reapply for Admission applications. Currently, these applications are filed in person at the Port of Entries and Pre-Flight Inspections. This announcement impacts visa exempt countries, which means principally Canadian citizens.
My initial concern is whether the on-line filing system will adequately accept evidence in support of the application. I suppose that is the benefit of a pilot program; they can decide what works and doesn’t. There are many potential benefits, as outlined in the announcement. The agency is clearly trying to further limit how much it handles immigration benefits issues at ports of entries, which is concerning as an agency goal. The agency similarly extended its L-1 Pilot Program recently, despite heavy criticism from stakeholders.
Here is the agency announcement:
U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is pleased to announce the pilot of the Electronic Secured Adjudication Forms Environment (e-SAFE) mid-year 2019. The new online system will allow for electronic filing of Form I-192, Application for Advance Permission to Enter as a Nonimmigrant, and Form I-212, Application for Permission to Reapply for Admission into the United States After Deportation or Removal. Citizens of specified visa exempt countries—Canada, Palau, the Federated States of Micronesia and the Marshall Islands—who are nonimmigrants and have been found inadmissible will be able to apply for a waiver online. Applicants will be able to view their application status, submit additional information if requested, and ultimately learn the outcome of their online waiver application through this system.
e-SAFE will streamline and reduce the processing time, and provide instruction on how to fill out the applications. Applicants who submit and pay for electronic filing via e-SAFE must go to the following ports of entry to complete the biometrics portion (fingerprints and photograph) of the application:
• Peace Bridge, New York • Lewiston Bridge, New York • Rainbow Bridge, New York • Peace Arch, Washington • Pacific Highway, Washington • Point Roberts, Washington • Toronto Pearson International Airport
These are the only ports of entry able to process electronic filing of Forms I-192 and I-212. Other locations will be added gradually and will be published on the e-SAFE public web page and on www.cbp.gov/travel/international-visitors/e-safe and e-SAFE.cbp.gov. CBP will continue to accept paper filing at ports of entry, but as e-SAFE is added to more ports of entry, paper filing locations will become limited.
Authorized attorneys or accredited representatives will be able to create special managed accounts to assist their clients in completing the application, upload the required documents and pay the client’s application fee once a validated Form G-28 is on file. However, applicants are responsible for the accuracy of all information submitted on their behalf.
Please review the attached frequently asked questions or visit www.cbp.gov/travel/international-visitors/e-safe for the most current information.
A separate email notice will be sent when e-SAFE is available for electronic filing.
Keri Brady, Director U.S. Customs and Border Protection Admissibility Review Office