USCIS Updates Immigration Documents to Prevent Fraud

In a move to cut down on fraud, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services revamped the Employment Authorization Document and the Certificate of Citizenship form last fall.

The new forms will deter fraud and strengthen security, according to USCIS Director Alejandro Mayorkas. “These enhanced documents are more secure than ever,” he said in a press release. “They advance our efforts to safeguard against fraud and protect the integrity of the immigration system.”

The application process for these forms is unchanged. But the look and feel of the documents is radically different.

The forensic laboratory at U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement helped USCIS develop the new EAD card. It uses new technology and tactile elements in order to help with easy card authentication, according to the release.

The new card, which looks similar to a driver’s license, has a photo of the cardholder as well as his or her fingerprint – and are both laser engraved. The card number and the case number are now both published on the front of the card.

The ICE forensic laboratory, which has been around since 1978, is the country’s authority on document authentication.

The old cards are still valid until they expire and will be replaced with new ones as people apply for renewal.

The agency hopes the new card will help law enforcement and employers more quickly identify the card and recognize the holder as being authorized to work in the country, according to the release.

USCIS also redesigned the N-560 Form, or the Certificate of Citizenship. This document goes to people who became citizens while living in the United States or people who were born outside the country to American citizens and applied for U.S. citizenship.

The agency has applied more tamper-proof printing methods to the new documents (which look similar to a birth certificate). It has a multi-colored background and a watermark to discourage fraud. It also has a digitized approval signature.

Previously issued Certificates of Citizenship are valid indefinitely, according to the release.

The new certificate does not make the list of accepted I-9 documents. Until 2007, the certificate was usable for proof of employment eligibility and identity under list A. The certificate is still on I-9’s list C that establishes employment authorization.

The agency is in an ongoing effort to update more secure and fraud-resistant documentation. USCIS created new Permanent Residency Cards in 2010 and redesigned the N-550 Certificate of Naturalization adding a photo and a signature.

A. Banerjee is a Houston immigration lawyer in Texas. Before selecting an immigration lawyer in Houston Texas, contact the Law Offices of Annie Banerjee by visiting their information filled web site at

Tagged with: , ,