Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Immigration Records System (or FIRST) is an online system for USCIS to process FOIA, Privacy Act, and Privacy Act amendment requests. FIRST is the only system in the U.S. government that allows users to submit and track FOIA requests and receive documents digitally. Using FIRST requesters can use a completely electronic FOIA/Privacy Act system, for submitting requests online and retrieving / downloading documents.
FIRST was initially rolled out in May 2018, allowing requestors to create a USCIS online account to receive requested documents digitally. The initial rollout of FIRST created more than 77,000 USCIS online accounts to manage and receive FOIA responses.
USCIS has now announced that beginning June 25, 2019 all FOIA requestors with a USCIS online account can submit FOIA requests online for their own records. Soon, the requestors will be able to submit online requests for non-A-File material (policies, communications etc.) and later this year, USCIS online account holders can make requests on behalf of another person.
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At GLF will continue to follow further developments in this matter and we will provide updates through our Newsletter as and when they become available.
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