What Does the USCIS Case Status “Case Transferred” Mean for My Fiancé Visa Application?

In a Nutshell

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) case status “Case Was Transferred And A New Office Has Jurisdiction” means that USCIS moved your case to a different service center or field office. The new office will continue processing your case from there. USCIS may choose to transfer your Form I-129F case for several reasons, including staffing shortages or processing delays. Cases may also be transferred if you, the applicant, move and are now in a new jurisdiction. If USCIS transfers your K-1 fiancé visa case, it will notify you via your online account and mail you a transfer notice. You don’t need to do anything, but take note that any future additional documentation for your case and any questions you have about your case will need to be directed to the new office.

Written by Attorney Curtis Lee
Written December 22, 2022

My USCIS Case Status Says “Case Transferred.” What Does That Mean for My Form I-129F Application?

“Case Transferred” means that USCIS sent your K-1 fiancé visa application to a different service center or field office for processing. This will not affect your receipt number. You will still use the same number you received in your original receipt notice to track your case status. Furthermore, this should not affect the processing time for your fiancé visa. It may even increase the speed of processing, but this is not guaranteed.

Usually, “Case Transferred” does not mean anything is wrong with your application! You should not worry about seeing this status.

You will see this status on your USCIS account online. In addition, USCIS will also send you an official notice by mail. This is called a transfer notice and will provide you with more information about why USCIS transferred your case and where it is now located.

Why Did USCIS Transfer My Form I-129F Application?

USCIS can transfer your case for a variety of reasons. However, you generally have nothing to worry about! These are some of the most common reasons for a transfer: 

  • The service center your case was originally located in is facing staffing shortages or a backlog of unprocessed applications. However, just because there is a backlog at one service center doesn’t necessarily mean USCIS will transfer your application to speed up the process.

  • You moved and provided USCIS with an updated address, so USCIS transferred your case to the service center in your region. Remember to update your address even if you don’t move far so you can avoid delays in your case.

  • You sent your application to the wrong service center or “wrong jurisdiction.” Keep in mind that it is very important for you to double-check that you are filing at the correct address (See “Form Details > Where To File”). USCIS can choose not to transfer your application and instead just reject your application.

Can I Request a Case Transfer From USCIS?

No, you cannot request a case transfer from USCIS. Even if processing times are shorter at a certain center as compared to another, you cannot change which service center handles your application. However, if your application is taking longer to process than the normal processing times for Form I-129F (which currently ranges from 4-16 months) you can contact USCIS about your case. You can also consider seeking the advice of an immigration attorney.

What Should I Do if My Form I-129F Case Gets Transferred to a New Office?

If your K-1 fiancé visa application is transferred to a new office, there is not much for you to do except wait for your next status update. “Case Transferred” is not a cause for concern! This is likely an administrative choice that does not mean anything about your application’s potential for acceptance. 

Continue to stay up to date on the notices sent from USCIS. USCIS will send you a transfer notice via mail and your account online. Be sure to follow any instructions included in the notices.

Where in the Form I-129F Application Process Might I See “Case Transferred” as My Status?

  • This could happen any time after you submit your case and get a receipt notice.

  • If you’re applying for a green card from outside the U.S., USCIS will eventually transfer your case to the National Visa Center (NVC) for continued processing. If you’re applying for an immigration benefit from inside the U.S. that requires an interview, your case will likely be transferred to a field office ahead of the interview. You’ll usually get a status update that the interview is being scheduled.

You could see the “Case Transferred” status at any point in the Form I-129F process after you submit your case and receive an initial receipt notice. 

Because you are applying for a visa from outside the U.S., USCIS will eventually transfer your application to the NVC. From there, the NVC will transfer your case to the U.S. embassy or consulate where you live for your visa interview. You will then get a status update that your interview is being scheduled. For more information about the visa interview, read our guide on K-1 fiancé visas.

How Can I Track USCIS Case Status Changes?

You want to be aware of your status changes in case USCIS asks you to take any action. For case transfers, the actual transfer notice should not require you to do anything. However, the next notice you receive may require you to take the next steps or submit additional information.

You can check your case status by entering your receipt number into USCIS’s online case status tracker.