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The Office of the Citizenship and Immigration Services Ombudsman

The Office of the Citizenship and Immigration Services Ombudsman (CIS Ombudsman) is dedicated to improving the quality of citizenship and immigration services delivered to the public by providing individual case assistance, identifying systemic issues, and making recommendations to improve the administration of immigration benefits by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). 


Phyllis Coven serves as the seventh CIS Ombudsman and Nathan Stiefel is the Deputy CIS Ombudsman.

Our mission is to:

  • Assist individuals and employers in resolving problems experienced when seeking immigration benefits from USCIS;
  • Identify trends and areas in which individuals and employers have problems dealing with USCIS; and
  • Recommend changes in USCIS’ administrative practices to mitigate problems and enhance processes.
Last Published Date: May 10, 2021

The Office of the Citizenship and Immigration Services Ombudsman News & Updates RSS Icon

Mar 12

Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas is designating Burma for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for 18 months. This new designation of Burma for TPS enables Burmese nationals (and individuals without nationality who last habitually resided in Burma) currently residing in the United States to file initial applications for TPS, so long as they meet eligibility requirements.

Mar 12

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced the termination of a 2018 agreement that undermined the interests of children and had a chilling effect on potential sponsors (usually a parent or close relative) from stepping up to sponsor an unaccompanied child placed in the care of HHS.

Mar 11

DHS filed for public inspection with the Federal Register a rule that formally removes from the Code of Federal Regulations the now-vacated 2019 rule on public charge inadmissibility.  On March 9, 2021, a court order vacating the 2019 public charge rule went into effect, and DHS immediately stopped applying the rule.  Today’s rule completes the last step in implementing that vacatur.

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