The Congressional Research Service (CRS) has published a report about the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). This federal organization is a component of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). It is tasked with adjudicating immigration benefit applications and other functions.

The USCIS, established by the Homeland Security Act of 2002, derives its powers from the former Immigration and Naturalization Service, which was dissolved upon the creation of the DHS. There are different USCIS “directorates” that perform the agency’s functions:

  • Service Center Operations
  • Refugee, Asylum, and International Operations
  • Field Operations
  • Administrative Appeals Office
  • External Affairs
  • Immigration Records & Identity Services
  • Fraud Detection & National Security
  • Management

USCIS’s responsibilities include the adjudication of immigrant visa applications, applications to adjust to lawful permanent resident status, affirmative asylum applications, petitions for naturalization, and employment authorization applications, and more.

Read more about the USCIS in:

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services: Authorities and Procedures, Congressional Research Service (CRS), CRS Legal Sidebar, LSB10671, December 20, 2021, PDF, 6 pages.