What Does the USCIS Case Status “Case Approved” Mean for My Form I-129F Application?
If your USCIS case status says “Case Was Approved,” congratulations! This status means USCIS has reviewed your Form I-129F application, determined your eligibility, and decided to grant your fiancé visa. You’ll often see several statuses before approval as your case progresses, and it can take a long time for USCIS to process and approve your application. It can take anywhere from 4–22 months for USCIS to process and approve Form I-129F applications. This article explains the case approval process with USCIS and what happens after your case is approved.
Written by Jonathan Petts.
Written December 13, 2022
My USCIS Case Status Says “Case Approved.” What Does That Mean for My Form I-129F?
“Case Approved” means that USCIS approved your Form I-129F application and you will successfully receive a K-1 fiancé visa! USCIS will send you this case status toward the end of your application process. However, it is not the final step.
USCIS will continue to update you when it sends your approved Form I-129F to the U.S. embassy or consulate where you live. You will then need to interview at this embassy or consulate. At that point, you may see statuses such as “Case is Ready to Be Scheduled for An Interview” or “Interview Was Scheduled.”
Before you receive “Case Approved,” you may see a variety of other statuses throughout the process. These may include:
“Case Was Received” which indicates USCIS received your application.
“Request for Initial or Additional Evidence Sent” means USCIS needs additional information, such as proof you will be married to your fiancé within 90 days of arriving in the United States.
“Expedite Request Received” means you requested an expedited application.
In addition to seeing “Case Approved” on your USCIS account, the agency will send you a notice by mail. Form I-797: Notice of Action will provide you with more details and the next step you need to complete, such as going to the embassy or consulate for an interview.
Does “Case Approved” Mean the Same Thing as “Case Received”?
No, “Case Accepted” does not have the same meaning as “Case Received.”
“Case Received” is a status that will appear at the beginning of your application process when USCIS first receives your Form I-129F. USCIS still has to review your application and make a decision.
“Case Approved” will appear near the end of your process. This means that USCIS has examined your application and decided that you are eligible for a K-1 fiancé visa!
My Form I-129F Case Was Approved by USCIS. Now What?
After your case status changes to “Case Approved,” wait until you receive your approval or welcome notice from USCIS by mail. The agency will send your approved form to the National Visa Center (NVC), which will send your form to the U.S. embassy or consulate where you live. You will then schedule and attend a visa interview, where the consulate officer will make a decision about your visa application.
The processing time between when USCIS approves your form to your visa interview depends on where you live.
Keep in mind that if you move at any point in the application process, you need to update your address with USCIS, not just USPS. This is critical to do so that you can receive all necessary notices from USCIS. If you see any of the following statuses, it likely indicates that the agency doesn’t have the right address for you on file:
“Card Is Being Returned to USCIS by Post Office”
“Card Was Determined As Undeliverable By The Post Office”
“Card (or Document) Was Returned to USCIS”
How Can I Track USCIS Case Status Changes?
It’s important to be aware of case status changes to stay updated on the progress of your application. It is exciting to learn that your case was approved! However, keep in mind you will still have to schedule and attend a visa interview at your U.S. embassy or consulate. It’s a good idea to stay up to date to see when you have to schedule your fiancé visa interview.
You can check your case status through USCIS’s online tracker by entering your receipt number from the first notice USCIS sent you indicating that they received your application. In addition to these online status changes, you will also get notices by mail.
Do I Need an Immigration Attorney To Get My Form I-129F Approved?
If you already see the status “Case Approved,” you likely do not need an immigration attorney because you are nearly at the end of the process.
Furthermore, if your case is taking longer than expected, more than the normal processing time for Form I-129F, you should first contact USCIS. If this does not work, you can then consider seeking legal help.