What Is Immigration Form I-797C?

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, or USCIS, uses Form I-797C to communicate with individuals who have filed for immigration benefits. This Notice of Action conveys the receipt of payments, rejection of applications, transfer of files, reopening of cases and dates of rescheduled appointments.

Notices printed prior to April 12, 2012, were printed on an expensive bond paper that included a Department of Homeland Security seal, while current forms are printed on plain bond paper and contain disability accommodation information on the reverse to reduce paper use. Those receiving Form I-797C are urged to pay close attention to the details contained within, as ignoring the instructions may cause a delay in their case.

While some state, local, private or public benefit-granting agencies may accept Form I-797C as collateral evidence for awarding benefits they administer, the form is only a receipt proving the applicant has submitted a benefit request. As the header of the form states, it has not yet been determined whether the applicant is eligible for immigration benefits.

Other types of I-797 Forms serve different functions, including those issued when an application or petition is approved (I-797), as a replacement Form I-94 (I-797A), for approval of an alien worker petition (I-797B), those that accompany benefit cards (I-797D), ones issued to request evidence(I-797E) and forms issued overseas to allow applicants to travel (I-797F).