USCIS FOIA Request for I-140 information (Sample G-639)

USCIS FOIA request for I-140 approval notice if employer is not sharing. Sample G-639. Send by email/post - $0 filing fees. Notarization optional. Result online.

Written by Anil Gupta
  Anil Gupta    Updated  9 Nov, 20

You can use USCIS FOIA request form G-639 to get I-140 information.
USCIS FOIA request (Freedom of Information request Act) is the answer to the question “How to get i-140 copy from USCIS” if your employer is not sharing.

FOIA Filing fees

Filing fees for FOIA is $0 (zero). It’s free with some conditions.
For your I-140 document request, you will most probably NOT be required to pay anything.

Please do NOT send any fees at the time of your request. After receipt of your FOIA request, USCIS will contact you if any fees are required.

Except for commercial requests, the first 100 pages of reproduction and the first 2 hours of search time are provided without charge.

Thereafter, requests processed may incur fees of 10 cents per page for duplication.

Fees are charged if the combined cost for searches, duplication, and/or review is more than $14, and by submitting Form G-639, you agree to pay for fees up to $25.

i140 receipt copy retrieved using USCIS FOIA
i140 receipt copy retrieved using USCIS FOIA

#1 FOIA Request Online – USCIS FIRST Site

USCIS FIRST system allows  FOIA requests to be made online. You will get an email your records are ready for download online in your account.

Create an account on the USCIS website and link it to your case, you will be able to log in to the digital delivery center to view and download the records you requested.

If you are already registered on the USCIS website, you can log in and link the case to your existing account.

#2 File FOIA by Postal Mail

Send a postal mail with form G-639 for Freedom of Information Act/Privacy Act Request.

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
National Records Center, FOIA/PA Office
P.O. Box 648010
Lee’s Summit, MO 64064-8010


#3 FOIA Request by Email

Email OR FAX is also acceptable as a valid FOIA request by USCIS. Fill the same form G-639, get it notarized and then scan and send it to the email address or FAX it.

USCIS Contact Center: 800-375-5283 or TTY 800-767-1833
Fax: 802-288-1793 or 816-350-5785

Sample G-639 form for I 140 – pre-filled

This sample pre-filled FOIA request gets you an i140 approval notice and receipt number directly from USCIS without informing your employer.

Open in New Window >

You can use this same FOIA request to get other immigration records too.

USCIS FOIA Request Status Track – I140

FOIA request for i140 processing time is 1.5 months.

I-140 request is considered a simple request and hence falls in the TRACK-1 request.

USCIS FOIA Request Control Number Status

USCIS sends an acknowledgment of the FOIA application receipt by paper mail with the FOIA control number (receipt number) to track your application status.

  • USCIS might first send a mail letter with the UNC number in case they need more info about your identity. 
  • The UNC number is converted to NRC number after they have verified your identity.
  • You will receive another mail letter with NRC number and PIN.

The USCIS FIRST (online account) is useful only after you get the NRC number and PIN so as to register and receive the document online.

It can take up to 3 weeks for the mail to arrive. Use the FOIA request control number (NRC) to check the status here on the USCIS FOIA website.

Is Alien registration number mandatory?

The alien number is not required for the FOIA request.

But, it is better to provide as much information as possible to USCIS for easy search of your record.

For the primary beneficiary of the I-140 application, the Alien number will be written on the I-140 approval form itself.

Where is my A number?

Sample i797 approval looks like this for I140 applications:

Open in New Window >

Hence, it is possible that you do not have it with you. This is fine and you should leave the field as blank in that case.

If the primary I-140 beneficiary has the EAD, then the Alien number can be found on the EAD card mentioned as USCIS#.

Documents required for G-639 form

There are no supporting documents required for FOIA requests and form G-639 requests.

But, I strongly recommend sending a notarized copy of your passport or your driving license to help USCIS check your identity.

Many times, USCIS rejects the FOIA request simply because they cannot verify your identity. 


Is PERM ETA number same as i140 A number?

No, the ETA number and A number are not the same.

Is form G-639 required to be Notarized?

The notary is not required for form G-639.

We recommend getting a notary on G-639 to prove your identity and faster processing.

In fact, you should sign the form in front of NOTARY.

If you do not want notary, just sign yourself ‘under penalty of perjury‘.

Can we file FOIA for i140 request online?

You can file a USCIS FOIA request to get i140 information online using USCIS FIRST website.

It is fast and more reliable than email or mail requests.

Is i140 available online from FOIA?

Once your i140 request has been completed, USCIS makes the i140 receipt copy available for download online on the FIRST website electronically.

How much is USCIS FOIA filing fees?

USCIS FOIA filing fees is zero (0) dollars.


Written by Anil Gupta
  Anil Gupta           

Recent discussion on forum

  1. Namz

    Dear Anilji,

    I have a query regarding the FOIA request we raised for my spouse’s I-140 approval copy please. Detailed scenario as below:
    Request #1 - Sent email with scanned copies of notarized documents (Form G-639 + Passport) - no response received over 30 days

    Request #2 - Tried to raise a request online, attached scanned copies of notarized documents (Form G-639 + Passport) - upload kept failing. So rebooted my computer and raised request #3 as below

    Request #3 - Raised request online successfully with notarized documents attached (Form G-639 + Passport) and also got a ‘Control Number - NRCXXXXXX’

    Now I have received a mail by post from USCIS asking to prove self identity with a UNPXXX-. I think this may be due to Request #2 where the documents failed to get uploaded.

    Question: What should I do now?

    1. Send them the notarized copies and give them the NRC control number that I was able to successfully generate on the 3rd attempt?
    2. Ignore that mail and let them process Request #3?
      Please advise. I dont want them to reject either of the requests due to any duplication.

    Thank you so much,

  2. Namz

    You are right, we do not know which Request # they responded to - thank you for your kind suggestion Anilji, we had all documents notarized, so immediately sent them the requested details and documents via registered post. Hoping they provide us the I-140 approval copy soon. This helps - thank you so much again.

  3. Srinivasan

    Hi Anil,
    I submitted my request on 03/21/2019 and got NRC number. Its been more than 5 months and still it shows “777 of 4512 pending requests”. Will it take this much time. Is it possible to expedite it? Can I resubmit the request as I didn’t mention my Alien Number in previous one. Please let me know.


  4. nkn19

    @Anil.Gupta Status of my FOIA request for I-140 information shows completed in FIRST website but document section does not show anything other than acknowledge letter which I initially got ~10 days filing my request. I have seen someone in the discussion face similar issue not sure if he got his documents.

    Can someone help me understand further on what is going on.

  5. abhi1

    Thanks for this post, I have applied FOIA for I-140 through online on 09/10/2019 and Completed on 10/19/2019.
    Steps are very easy and straight forward, just few forms to fill,
    I have provided passport number and I-94 number and did not provide receipt number as I don’t have it, At the end of the application I uploaded only notarized passport(including h1b visa page, Notarized only first page) and notarized driving license.

    The initial request has been created on the portal with REQXXXXXX number and in a week request number got changed to NRCXXXXXX, and on the same day, I see an acknowledgement letter saying - I have the requested only for i-140 and its been put under track 1 of multitracking system.

    Intially, I see the status as “Files Requested”, and then in around 10 to 15 days, I see the status as “Files has been received from NRC” and case status has been changed to something like - “In review”.

    I see the pending requests changes everyday soemthing like 3450 of 3675, 3350 of 3600, 3250 of 3600, … till it reaches 1900 of 3450.
    on 10/19/2019 my request has been completed and I see the i-140 petitiion in document library section.

  6. abhi1

    Hi venkat,

    In my case, after an year I have applied, not sure why you have got that reply.

    1. Purpose of request — for porting the priority date and future enployment.
    2. Information about family members required? - I haven’t provided.
    3. Last page system will ask for “Describe the records you are seeking”
      Do we need select I-140 option only or any option needs to select including I-140 ? – only i-140.

    Good luck

  7. YesJay

    Hi Veera,

    I called the helpline number and also sent an email to USCIS. Both of them didnt resolve the issue. I didn’t have any other choice but to raise a new request and hoping this time they upload the document after ‘completion’ stage.

  8. abhi1

    In case of online FOIA, your case will be registered by default and you see that registered case in portal and get the acknowledge letter, meaning you don’t need to explicitly register the case by using PIN. The acknowledge letter is just for your reference and you don’t need to do anything with acknowledge letter and PIN.

    Initially your registered cases status is “Submitted”, then it will change something like - “Files Requested”, “In review”, “Completed” .

    Once status is completed, you should see the documents requested in Document library section.

  9. Devaki_S

    Thank you for your response. they uploaded my documents after a week from changing the status to completed under document library section.

  10. Ganesh_123

    Hi Abhi, I am also in similar condition.

    I am planning to raise a FOIA request for my I140 detail as I don’t have the receipt number, but I am confused which I94 I should provide.

    Do we need to provide the latest I94 or the I94 detail we provided while filing the I140.

    I am asking this question because my I94 changed after I filed my i140 and now I am planning to raise FOIA I am bit confused which I 94 I should provide? Could you guide? Appreciate your help.

  11. Jdc

    Hello Everyone, wanted to share my experience with online FOIA process for I140 copy
    1/21/2020 Created online account and submitted FOIA request with family and personal details, uploaded previous H1B extension copies
    1/24/2020 Status changed to Files Requested and they uploaded acknowledgement letter, request queued at 5015
    3/12/2020 Status changed to Files Received, queue at 2566
    3/19/2020 Status changed to Case in Process, queue at 2050
    3/20/2020 Status changed to Completed, they uploaded I140 copy within 4hrs of status change

    Note: Please do not rely on the completion date they give, at least in my case it showed 2/16/2020 but actually I received the documents on 3/20/2020

  12. vikki123


    Need some help. I have raised the FOIA request in online with G-639 and passport notarized and uploaded for my I-140 approval copy. The team was responding with 76 pages of complete I-140 documents. But I have not received I-140 approval copy. I called them and asked for the same they are saying that we have a complete set of your I-140 that is what they have shared to me that 76 page one.

    Any suggestion or help how to get my I-140 approval copy, my employer is not sharing at all.
    In that 76 pages I see one section Alien No: which is written with pen manually is that same number that is my I-140 Beneficiary/Alien number? which start with A- with 9 numbers.

    Thank you!

  13. Shreerang_Dhabe


    I raised FOIA request for my 1-140 approval copy but received a response from USCIS basically saying no records were found for your request.

    USCIS also mentions that my documents have been forwarded to the National Visa Center.

    What are my options in such a case?

  14. Benimm

    @Sri_Harsha it will be in the beneficiary section column (your name also will be there) in the i140 apvl notice, that’s where mine is. It’s there in my h1 approval notices as well (h1s processed after getting i140, and in the same beneficiary section column)

  15. Benimm

    @Sri_Harsha This is not the approval notice, this is a copy of I140 application/petition. You need to get the approval notice (I797), it will look like h1 apvl notice.

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