In a July 25, 2022 notice titled USCIS Extends Flexibility for Responding to Agency Requests During COVID-19, USCIS stated:

"In an effort to take the lessons learned from our pandemic posture, USCIS has been evaluating which flexibilities can and should be extended permanently. As a result of this evaluation, the reproduced signature flexibility announced in March, 2020, will become permanent policy on July 25, 2022."

The July 25, 2022 notice makes permanent the COVID accommodation that allows filers to submit copies of USCIS benefit request forms (applications and petitions) that were properly signed with wet signatures, but filers must continue keep the wet-signed forms in their files. The notice provides no new expansion of electronic signatures for benefits applications, with “electronic signatures” continuing to be limited to USCIS e-filed forms only.

The March, 2020 signature flexibility notice being extended permanently according to the July 25, 2022 notice reads:

USCIS Announces Flexibility in Submitting Required Signatures During COVID-19 National Emergency

Release Date: 03/20/2020

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services today announced that, due to the ongoing COVID-19 National Emergency announced by President Trump on March 13, 2020, we will accept all benefit forms and documents with reproduced original signatures, including the Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker, for submissions dated March 21, 2020, and beyond.

USCIS already accepts various petitions, applications and other documents bearing an electronically reproduced original signature. This means that a document may be scanned, faxed, photocopied, or similarly reproduced provided that the copy must be of an original document containing an original handwritten signature, unless otherwise specified. [1] For forms that require an original "wet" signature, per form instructions, USCIS will accept electronically reproduced original signatures for the duration of the National Emergency. This temporary change only applies to signatures. All other form instructions should be followed when completing a form.

Individuals or entities that submit documents bearing an electronically reproduced original signature must also retain copies of the original documents containing the "wet" signature. USCIS may, at any time, request the original documents, which if not produced, could negatively impact the adjudication of the immigration benefit.

[1] See Volume 1, General Policies and Procedures, Part B, Submission of Benefit Requests, Chapter 2, Signatures [1 USCIS-PM B.2].

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