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USCIS to Begin Requiring COVID-19 Vaccination


USCIS to Begin Requiring COVID-19 Vaccination

On September 14, 2021, USCIS announced that immigrant applicants would be required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 for approval of their Form I-693, Report of Medical Examination and Vaccination Record. Most applicants filing for adjustment of status to become lawful permanent residents are required to submit a Form I-693.  This new requirement will go into effect on October 1, 2021.

No specific brand of vaccine is required, although the CDC lists Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, and Janssen (also known as Johnson & Johnson) as possible options. The applicant must complete the series of vaccinations prior to their medical examination. Pfizer-BioNTech requires two doses administered 21 days apart, Moderna requires two doses administered 28 days apart, and Janssen only requires a single dose.

USCIS has noted that blanket waivers may be granted for the following circumstances:

  • The individual is not at the appropriate age to receive the vaccine (currently less than 12 years old).
  • Pre-existing medical conditions suggest the vaccine should not be administered.
  • The vaccine is not routinely available where the civil surgeon practices; or
  • Limits in vaccine supply would cause significant delay for the applicant to receive the vaccination.

Furthermore, an individual may apply for a waiver from the vaccine due to religious beliefs or moral convictions by submitting a Form I-691, Application for Waiver of Grounds of Inadmissibility.

If you have questions about whether you will be required to get the vaccination as part of your immigration process, please schedule a consultation with our office today.

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