The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Administrative Appeals Office (AAO) recently posted 17 separate non-precedent decision for I-526 and I-829 cases, from January to May of 2014, to the USCIS.gov website. Click here to view. IIUSA is in the process of summarizing each case which will be available to IIUSA members in next week’s weekly report.
History of the Administrative Appeals Office (AAO)
The Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) established the Administrative Appeals Unit (AAU) in 1983 to centralize the review of administrative appeals. Prior to 1983, responsibility for the adjudication of administrative appeals and the issuance of precedent decisions was shared by the INS commissioner, four regional commissioners and three overseas district directors.
The INS later established the Legalization Appeals Unit to adjudicate appeals of denied Legalization and Special Agricultural Worker applications under the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986. In 1994, INS consolidated the two units to create the AAO. The Homeland Security Act of 2002 separated the INS into three components within the new DHS, and on March 1, 2003, the AAO became a part of USCIS.
Filing an Appeal with the AAO
Petitioners and applicants for certain categories of immigration benefits may appeal a negative decision. The AAO conduct administrative review of those appeals to ensure consistency and accuracy in the interpretation of immigration law and policy. Under authority that the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has delegated to USCIS, the AAO exercise appellate jurisdiction over approximately 50 different immigration case types.
In the EB-5 context, applicants may file appeals pertaining to Request for Participation as Regional Center, Termination of Participation as Regional Center and petitioners may appeal rulings on I-526 (Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur) petitions.
To read more about the AAO appeals process, visit the the USCIS.gov AAO webpage here.