I-290B AAO Appeal

The Administrative Appeals Office (AAO) reviews USCIS officer's decisions regarding immigration under its jurisdiction.  In the event that your case is denied but you believe that any other reasonable officer would have come to a different conclusion, you can file an appeal.

Whereas the same officer would be reviewing your case in a Motion to Reconsider, a different judge will be reviewing your case in an Appeal.  Keep in mind however, it is more costly to file for an Appeal.

Deadlines (+3 days from date of mailing if mailed)

For most appeals, you need to filed within 30 days.

If you are appealing a USCIS decision to revoke an immigrant petition (for example, USCIS revokes your visa), you need to file within 15 days.

AAO will not accept these cases:

  • Rejected Immigration Benefit Requests (applications for naturalization or permanent residence)
  • Denials that were abandoned, administratively terminated, or administratively closed
    • Abandoned: Cases are usually abandoned because the applicant failed to do any of the following without good cause: undergo a medical examination, submit enough evidence for the original petition, follow up on the case with reasonable diligence, or attend an informal conference.
    • Administratively Terminated/Closed: Cases are usually administratively terminated or closed because an outside event outside the control of the AAO or client needs to occur.  Once it has been closed, there will be no hearings or court dates until the case is re-calendared.  Since administratively terminated or administratively closed does not mean the case is denied, AAO will not accept the case.
  • Petitions that were Withdrawn
  • Motion to Reopens or Reconsider that were denied
    • A denied motion may be appealed to the AAO only if the original decision was appealable to the AAO.  See 8 CFR 103.5(a)(6). 
  • AAO decision (appeal, motion, or certification)

Q.  What can I do if my motion is denied or dismissed?

The AAO may do a De Novo review, which means that they will look at the record anew and is not required to use findings made in the initial denial decision.  However, this also means that they may address new issues that were not raised or resolved in the prior decision.