NOIR stands for Notice Of Intent to Revoke. It is sent to an H1B applicant to inform them about the US government’s intent to revoke a previously approved request, petition, or application.
Issued by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), a NOIR is not the same as a NOID (Notice of Intent to Deny) or an RFE or Request for Evidence. The NOID and RFE are issued when the decision is in favor of the petitioner. Contrariwise, a NOIR does not bring good news. There are high stakes involved, and the visa processing takes longer than usual for the USCIS to decide on the petition in question.
For the better understanding about this topic, we recommend you to go through the H1B Revocation Process.
What are the reasons for H1B Intent to Revoke? Let’s explore them.
The USCIS holds the right to rescind a petition by issuing a NOIR as per Section 205 under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). Generally, a Notice of Intent to Revoke will list the reasons behind the revocation of your petition. Your visa officer can deny your visa and request the USCIS to issue a NOIR for any one or more of the following reasons:
1. Misrepresentation or fraud by the beneficiary
Failing to give the correct and honest answers about your relationship can lead to the visa officer concluding your marriage is a sham. Sometimes, your documentation might have seemed fake or sketchy. If the officer is not fully convinced about your relationship details, they can revoke your petition.
2. Petitioner’s inability to sponsor
A consular officer may have found incriminating information, such as that the U.S. spouse is still married to another person or is convicted of domestic violence but did not disclose it.
3. Derogatory information available upon investigation of the petition
Consulates sometimes conduct their own investigations to verify a relationship's legitimacy before conducting an interview. This procedure is quite common in some Consulates in African countries. In some cases, a consular officer may visit the beneficiary's residence or interview the beneficiary's neighbors as part of the investigation. Despite the fact that neighbors rarely see or know the immigrant, consular officers may claim the relationship is not legitimate.
4. Beneficiary’s ineligibility for the visa
The spouse beneficiary may be legally married to someone else or have previously committed marriage fraud. A child beneficiary could have been found to have recently married, thereby losing eligibility to immigrate as a child of a permanent resident of the United States. As per the I.N.A. Section 204(c), an immigration petition cannot be approved if the beneficiary previously entered into a sham marriage to receive an immigration benefit.
5. Mistake or misrepresentation by the officer
This issue may often arise because of language barriers, where the officer mishears or misinterprets a beneficiary’s response, resulting in the petition being revoked. An investigation can also be botched by a consular official going to the wrong house and reaching out to the wrong neighbors.
6. Misconduct by the interviewing consular officer
Although rare, there are possibilities for a petition to be revoked because of the interviewer’s biased or prejudiced views. The original H1B petition may be improperly reinvestigated and decided upon by some overzealous consular officers. Consular officers must exercise a great deal of caution when deciding a case. They are not allowed to ask irrelevant or speculative questions about the matter. There is also no basis for returning a petition for revocation to USCIS based solely on conclusory remarks.
A USCIS NOIR H1B can trigger a lot of tension and uncertainty. However, it is important to remember that it does not signify the end of your visa journey.
It is important to immediately respond to a NOIR letter in case you receive one from the USCIS. A NOIR letter will usually ask for the following details:
First of all, brace yourself for a long wait because there are no US immigration rules or guidelines to hasten a NOIR response. Upon receiving your response, the USCIS will conduct further investigation to ascertain the new information and finalize your petition. This investigation can take up to a year.
The USCIS will revert your petition to the relevant Consulate if the decision is in your favor. You may need to go through the processing one more time. However, you will have the assurance that the USCIS will not revoke your petition for similar reasons.
Also Read: Understanding H1B Visa Rejection Reasons
If the decision is unfavorable and the USCIS rejects the rebuttal, you should re-appeal within fifteen days. A revoked H1B visa means:
You must resign from your job, leave the country, and find another secure alternative to legally remain in the US. Also, you will have to mention the details of your revocation in all your future US visa applications.
A NOIR letter has far-reaching consequences. Your US employer will come under the scrutiny of US immigration officials, who will investigate how they have handled other immigrant workers’ applications.
US immigration procedures are elaborate and complex. To understand the various processes, please visit TechFetch H1B, the only portal with in-depth information and guidelines about US immigration.
**Disclaimer: US immigration laws are subject to change. Please refer to the official USCIS website for the latest updates.