[Federal Register Volume 63, Number 51 (Tuesday, March 17, 1998)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 12979-12988]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 98-6828]


=======================================================================
-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE

Immigration and Naturalization Service

8 CFR Parts 103, 204, 208, 209, 244, 245, 264, 299, 316, 332, and 
335

[INS No. 1891-97]
RIN 1115-AF03


Fingerprinting Applicants and Petitioners for Immigration 
Benefits; Establishing a Fee for Fingerprinting by the Service; 
Requiring Completion of Criminal Background Checks Before Final 
Adjudication of Naturalization Applications

AGENCY: Immigration and Naturalization Service, Justice.

ACTION: Interim rule with request for comments.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: This rule amends the Immigration and Naturalization Service 
(Service) regulations relating to fingerprinting applicants and 
petitioners for benefits under the Immigration and Nationality Act 
(Act). This rule implements certain provisions of the Department of 
Justice Appropriations Act, 1988, which prohibit the Service from 
accepting fingerprint cards (Form FD-258) for the purpose of conducting 
criminal background checks on applicants and petitioners for 
immigration benefits prepared by any individual or entity other than 
the Service, a registered State or local law enforcement agency, a 
United States consular office at a United States embassy or consulate, 
or a United States military installation abroad. The rule also 
announces the termination of the Designated Fingerprinting Services 
(DFS) certification program. In addition, this rule establishes a $25 
service fee for fingerprinting by the Service, and requires Service 
receipt of a definitive response from the Federal Bureau of 
Investigation (FBI) before final adjudication of a naturalization 
application.

DATES:
    Effective date: This interim rule is effective March 29, 1998.
    Comment date: Written comments must be submitted on or before May 
18, 1998.

ADDRESSES: Please submit written comments, in triplicate, to the 
Director, Policy Directives and Instructions Branch, Immigration and 
Naturalization Service, 425 I Street, NW., Room 5307, Washington, DC 
20536. To ensure proper handling, please refer to INS No. 1891-97 on 
your correspondence. Comments are available for public inspection at 
the above address by calling (202) 514-3048 to arrange for an 
appointment.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
Ann Palmer or Thomas E. Cook, Office of Naturalization Operations, 
Immigration and Naturalization Service, 801 I Street, NW., Room 935, 
Washington, DC 20536, telephone (202) 305-0539.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Background

1. What is the Designated Fingerprinting Services (DFS) Program?

    The Designated Fingerprinting Services (DFS) program allowed 
qualified individuals, businesses, and law enforcement agencies to 
apply to the Service for certification as a DFS entity to provide 
fingerprinting services to applicants and petitioners for immigration 
benefits. The primary purposes of the program were to facilitate the 
processing of applications

[[Page 12980]]

and petitions for benefits and protect the integrity of the 
fingerprinting process. The Service developed the DFS program as a 
result of reports from the United States Department of Justice, 
Inspector General, and United States General Accounting Office which 
found that the Service's unregulated fingerprinting policy, in effect 
since 1982, did not provide sufficient security controls. Under the DFS 
program, the Service accepted fingerprint cards (Form FD-258) filed 
with applications and petitions for immigration benefits only if they 
were prepared by a designated Service employee, an approved DFS entity, 
an intending DFS entity that had submitted an application for 
certification prior to March 1, 1997, or a law enforcement agency 
registered as a DFS entity.

2. How Did the Service Implement the DFS Certification Program?

    On May 15, 1995, the Service published a notice of proposed 
rulemaking in the Federal Register at 60 FR 25856 proposing to 
implement the DFS certification program, which set forth the 
certification requirements and application procedures for individuals 
and entities interested in providing fingerprinting services to 
applicants and petitioners for immigration benefits. The Service also 
specified a date by which it would no longer accept fingerprint cards 
prepared by unauthorized entities.
    On June 4, 1996, after a 60-day public comment period, the Service 
published a final rule in the Federal Register at 61 FR 28003, formally 
implementing the DFS certification program. The final rule became 
effective July 5, 1996. However, due to the insufficient number of 
certification applications received by the Service, and to ensure that 
adequate fingerprinting services were available to all applicants and 
petitioners for immigration benefits, the Service published a final 
rule in the Federal Register on November 7, 1996, at 61 FR 57583, 
extending the effective date of the DFS certification program to March 
1, 1997.

Legislative Authority

1. Why is the Service Terminating the Designated Fingerprinting 
Services Certification Process?

    On November 26, 1997, the Department of Justice Appropriations Act, 
1998 (Pub. L. 105-119, 111 Stat. 2440) was enacted. This legislative 
change necessitates elimination of the DFS program. Pursuant to this 
legislation, effective December 3, 1997, the Service can accept 
fingerprint cards (Form FD-258) for the purpose of conducting criminal 
background checks on applications and petitions for immigration 
benefits only if prepared by a Service office, a registered State or 
local law enforcement agency, a United States consular office at a 
United States embassy or consulate, or a United States military 
installation abroad. Accordingly, the Service is removing the DFS 
certification process from its regulations.

2. How Will the Service Implement the New Fingerprint Requirements?

    To comply with Public Law 105-119, 111 Stat. 2440, the Service is 
establishing a new program to fingerprint applicants and petitioners 
for immigration benefits. The Service is opening new offices, known as 
Application Support Centers (ASCs), and establishing mobile 
fingerprinting centers nationwide to fingerprint applicants and 
petitioners for immigration benefits. The Service will also fingerprint 
applicants and petitioners for immigration benefits in certain Service 
field offices and, in less populated areas, is entering into co-
operative agreements with designated State or local law enforcement 
agencies (DLEA) which have registered with the Service to provide 
fingerprinting services to applicants and petitioners for immigration 
benefits. This new fingerprinting program applies only to acceptance of 
Form FD-258, Applicant Card, submitted to the Service in connection 
with applications and petitions for immigration benefits.

3. How Does the New Legislation Affect Filing of Applications and 
Petitions for Immigration Benefits?

    Under the Service's new fingerprinting program, effective on 
December 3, 1997, the Service began accepting fingerprinting cards with 
applications and petitions for immigration benefits only if prepared by 
the Service, registered State or local law enforcement agencies, a 
United States consular office at a United States embassy or consulate, 
or a United States military installation abroad.
    Effective March 29, 1998, applicants and petitioners for 
immigration benefits residing in the United States will be required to 
file applications and petitions without completed fingerprint cards. 
After filing, the Service will notify applicants and petitioners to 
appear at an ASC or other Service-designated location, including 
designated State or local law enforcement agencies, to be 
fingerprinted. Applicants and petitioners residing outside of the 
United States submit completed fingerprint cards prepared by the 
Service, a United States consular office or a United States military 
installation abroad with applications and petitions for immigration 
benefits.
a. How Has the Fingerprinting Process for Naturalization Been Changed?
    Effective December 3, 1997, naturalization applications from 
individuals residing in the United States (as defined in section 
101(a)(38) of the Act) have been filed without completed fingerprint 
cards. After filing the Form N-400, these naturalization applicants 
have been notified to appear at an ASC or other Service-designated 
location to be fingerprinted. Naturalization applications from 
individuals residing outside of the United States have been filed with 
completed fingerprint cards prepared by a United States consular office 
at a United States embassy or consulate or a United States military 
installation aboard.
b. How Has the Fingerprinting Process for Immigration Benefits Other 
Than Naturalization Been Changed?
    Effective on December 3, 1997, applicants and petitioners for 
immigration benefits other than naturalization have filed applications 
and petitions with completed fingerprint cards prepared by State or 
local law enforcement agencies registered with the Service to provide 
fingerprinting services.
    Effective on March 29, 1998, applications and petitions for all 
immigration benefits other than naturalization, including asylum 
applications, from individuals residing in the United States, will be 
filed without completed fingerprint cards. After filing, these 
individuals, who require fingerprinting in connection with applications 
and petitions, will be notified to appear at an ASC or other Service-
designated location to be fingerprinted. Under this new process, the 
Service will continue to give special consideration to processing of 
fingerprint cards associated with orphan petitions to ensure timely and 
flexible adjudication of these cases.
    Effective December 3, 1997, applications and petitions for 
immigration benefits other than naturalization from individuals 
residing outside of the United States have been filed with completed 
fingerprint cards prepared by the Service, a United States consular 
office at a United States embassy or consulate, or a United States 
military installation aboard.

[[Page 12981]]

4. Will Applicants and Petitioners Who Were Fingerprinted by a DFS 
Entity Need to Be Re-fingerprinted?

    Fingerprint cards submitted with properly filed applications and 
petitions for any immigration benefit which were accepted by the 
Service before December 3, 1997, will be processed in accordance with 
the regulations in effect at the time of acceptance. For purposes of 
implementing this rule, fingerprint cards are deemed accepted by the 
Service before December 3, 1997, if: (1) The application or petition 
was hand delivered to a Service office before December 3, 1997; or (2) 
the application or petition was postmarked before December 3, 1997, and 
was received in a Service office before December 6, 1997. Applicants 
and petitioners whose properly completed fingerprint cards were 
accepted before December 3, 1997, will not ordinarily be required to be 
re-fingerprinted in accordance with these new fingerprinting 
procedures, unless the Attorney General determines that it is necessary 
to re-fingerprint an applicant or petitioner. For example, the Attorney 
General may decide to take an additional set of fingerprints for an 
asylum applicant in order to comply with the identity provisions of 
section 208(d)(5)(A)(i) of the Act or in cases in which the Federal 
Bureau of Investigation rejects a fingerprint card. However, beginning 
on December 3, 1997, for naturalization applicants and on March 29, 
1998, for applicants and petitioners for other benefits, the Service 
will notify applicants and petitioners who file a completed fingerprint 
card prepared by a DFS entity to be re-fingerprinted at an ASC or other 
Service-designated location.

5. Why is the Service Charging a Fee for Fingerprinting Services?

    In Pub. L. 105-119, 111 Stat. 2440, Congress authorized the Service 
to charge a fee for fingerprinting in connection with the new 
fingerprinting program. Accordingly, the Service will charge the fee 
necessary to recover the administrative and support costs of the new 
fingerprinting program, and for the collection, safeguarding, and 
accounting of the fees. All fingerprinting fees initially collected 
from applicants and petitioners for immigration benefits will be 
deposited into the Immigration Examinations Fee Account established by 
8 U.S.C. 1356(m)-(p). However, the Service will not begin charging the 
fee for fingerprinting applicants and petitioners for immigration 
benefits until March 29, 1998. This service fee for fingerprinting will 
apply only to applications and petitions for immigration benefits filed 
on or after March 29, 1998. Therefore, applicants and petitioners for 
immigration benefits who file before March 29, 1998, but who are 
scheduled to be fingerprinted by the Service on or after March 29, 
1998, will be fingerprinted by the Service without charge. This delay 
in collecting the fee for fingerprinting services will allow the 
Service to ensure that the new ASCs and mobile fingerprinting centers 
are operating efficiently.

6. What Fee is Being Established for Fingerprinting by the Service?

    In the interest of fairness and based on a Service-determined cost 
estimate, during the early stages of the new fingerprinting program, 
the service fee for fingerprinting by the Service is established at $25 
per applicant, petitioner, beneficiary, sponsor, or other individual 
required by Service regulations or form instructions to be 
fingerprinted in connection with an application or petition for 
immigration benefits. The Service anticipates that this $25 fee will 
not recover all Service costs for fingerprinting individuals for 
immigration benefits at present. However, the Service plans to conduct 
a fee analysis under provisions of Office of Management and Budget 
Circular A-25 in the near future to determine the full cost to the 
Service of fingerprinting individuals for immigration benefits.
    Congress has also authorized registered State and local law 
enforcement agencies and United States consular offices at United 
States embassies or consulates, or United States military installations 
abroad to charge a fee for fingerprinting applicants and petitioners 
for immigration benefits.

7. How Will Applicants and Petitioners Submit the Fee for 
Fingerprinting by the Service?

    The one-time $25 fee for fingerprinting by the Service must be 
submitted at the time of filing the application or petition, in 
addition to the filing fee for the application or petition. However, 
applicants and petitioners residing abroad who are fingerprinted at 
United States consular offices or military installations abroad do not 
need to be fingerprinted by the Service. Therefore, these applicants 
and petitioners will submit the completed fingerprint cards at the time 
of filing the application or petition for immigration benefits, and do 
not need to submit the $25 fee for fingerprinting by the Service. In 
addition, asylum applicants are exempt from submitting the fee for 
fingerprinting by the Service in connection with filing an application 
for asylum and withholding of removal.
    Applications and petitions for immigration benefits filed by 
individuals residing in the United States submitted without the $25 
service fee for fingerprinting by the Service or with the incorrect 
service fee for fingerprinting, will not be rejected as improperly 
filed. The Service will notify applicants or petitioners to submit the 
correct fee for fingerprinting, and will withhold processing of the 
application or petition, including scheduling for fingerprinting, until 
the correct fingerprinting fee is received. Failure by an applicant or 
petitioner to submit the correct fee for fingerprinting by the Service 
within the time allotted in a notice to the applicant or petitioner 
will result in denial of the application or petition due to 
abandonment.

8. How Does Public Law 105-119 Affect Adjudication of Naturalization 
Applications?

    The new legislation codifies current Service policy that the 
Service must receive confirmation from the Federal Bureau of 
Investigation (FBI) that a full criminal background check has been 
completed on applicants for naturalization before final adjudication of 
the application. This interim rule requires the Service to receive a 
definitive response from the FBI that a criminal background check has 
been completed before notifying applicants for naturalization to appear 
before a Service officer for the mandatory examination on the Form N-
400, Application for Naturalization.

Explanation of Changes

What Changes is the Service Making to its Regulations?

1. Changes in Sec. 103.1
    In Sec. 103.1, paragraph (f)(3)(iii)(NN) is amended to remove the 
Form I-850, Application for Certification for Designated Fingerprinting 
Services, from the list of decisions of which the Associate 
Commissioner for Examinations exercises jurisdiction. This change is 
necessary because the Service is eliminating the DFS certification 
program.
2. Changes in Sec. 103.2
    In Sec. 103.2, paragraphs (a)(1) and (a)(7)(i) are revised to allow 
the Service to treat as properly filed applications and petitions which 
require completion of fingerprint cards but which are submitted without 
the $25 fee for fingerprinting by the Service. Paragraph (a)(7)(ii) is 
revised to allow the Service to reject applications or petitions as 
improperly filed if the check or other financial instrument used to pay 
the

[[Page 12982]]

fingerprinting fee is returned to the Service as not payable. 
Paragraphs (b)(9), (b)(10)(i), (b)(13), and (b)(14) are revised to 
include requests that applicants and petitioners for immigration 
benefits appear for fingerprinting at a Service office or other 
location designated by the Service, and to allow the Service to deny 
the applications and petitions of individuals who fail to appear for 
fingerprinting. Paragraph (e) is revised to eliminate the DFS program 
and establish new fingerprinting procedures for applicants and 
petitioners for immigration benefits.
3. Changes in Sec. 103.7
    In Sec. 103.7, paragraph (b)(1) is amended to add the fee for 
fingerprinting by the Service, and to remove the fee for the Form I-
850, Application for Certification for Designated Fingerprinting 
Services. Charging a fee for fingerprinting is necessary to fund the 
Service's new fingerprinting program, and the fee is established at $25 
per individual who requires fingerprinting. The fee for the Form I-850, 
Application for Certification for Designated Fingerprinting Services, 
is being removed because the form relates to the DFS program and the 
Service is canceling the DFS program by publication of this interim 
rule.
4. Changes in Sec. 204.3 and Sec. 204.4
    In Secs. 204.3 and 204.4, the Service is amending the regulations 
to require the Form I-600A, Application for Advanced Processing of 
Orphan Petition, the Form I-600, Petition to Classify Orphan as an 
Immediate Relative, and the Form I-360, Petition for Amerasian, Widow 
or Special Immigrant, filed on behalf of an Amerasian child of a United 
States citizen to be filed without completed fingerprint cards, and to 
require the prospective adoptive parents, other adult members of the 
prospective adoptive parents' household, and sponsors of Amerasian 
children to appear at a Service office, or other location designated by 
the Service, for fingerprinting in accordance with the new 
fingerprinting procedures being established in Sec. 103.2(e).
5. Changes in Sec. 208.7, Sec. 208.10, and Sec. 208.14
    In Sec. 208.7, the Service is amending the regulations to clarify 
that failure to follow requirements for fingerprint processing may 
affect an asylum applicant's eligibility for employment authorization. 
In Sec. 208.10, the Service is amending the regulations to include 
failure to follow the requirements for fingerprint processing as a 
ground for dismissal of a case or waiver of an adjudication by an 
asylum officer. In Sec. 208.14, the Service is amending the regulations 
to permit referral of an asylum application when the applicant is 
deemed to have waived adjudication by an asylum officer.
6. Changes in Sec. 209.1 and Sec. 209.2
    In Secs. 209.1 and 209.2, the Service is amending the regulations 
to require refugee entrants and aliens granted asylum to appear at a 
Service office, or other location designated by the Service, for 
fingerprinting in accordance with the new fingerprinting procedures 
being established in Sec. 103.2(e) after filing the application, rather 
than submitting the fingerprints on a completed fingerprint card with 
the application.
7. Changes in Sec. 244.6
    In Sec. 244.6, the Service is amending the regulations to require 
applicants for temporary protected status to appear at a Service 
office, or other location designated by the Service, for fingerprinting 
in accordance with the new fingerprinting procedures being established 
in Sec. 103.2(e) after filing the Form I-821, Application for Temporary 
Protected Status, rather than submitting the fingerprints on a 
completed fingerprint card with the application.
8. Changes in Sec. 245.7
    In Sec. 245.7, the Service is amending the regulations to require 
applicants for benefits under section 599E of Public Law 101-167 to 
appear at a Service office, or other location designated by the 
Service, for fingerprinting in accordance with the new fingerprinting 
procedures being established in Sec. 103.2(e) after filing the Form I-
485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, 
rather than submitting the fingerprints on a completed fingerprint card 
with the application.
9. Changes in Sec. 264.2 and Sec. 264.5
    In Secs. 264.2 and 264.5, the Service is amending the regulations 
to require applicants for creation of a record of permanent residence 
and for a replacement alien registration card to appear at a Service 
office, or other location designated by the Service, for fingerprinting 
in accordance with the new fingerprinting procedures being established 
in Sec. 103.2(e) after filing the application, rather than submitting 
the fingerprints on a completed fingerprint card with the application.
10. Changes in Sec. 299.1 and Sec. 299.5
    In Secs. 299.1 and 299.5, the Service is amending the regulations 
to remove the Form I-850, Application for Certification for Designated 
Fingerprinting Services, and the Form I-850A, Attestation by Designated 
Fingerprinting Service Certified to Take Fingerprints, from the listing 
of forms. These changes are necessary because the forms relate to the 
DFS program and, by publication of this interim rule, the Service is 
terminating the DFS program in order to comply with the new legislation 
relating to fingerprinting applicants and petitioners for immigration 
benefits.
11. Changes in Sec. 316.4
    In Sec. 316.4, the Service is amending the regulations to require 
applicants for naturalization to file a complete application without a 
fingerprint card, and to appear at a Service office, or other location 
designated by the Service, for fingerprinting in accordance with the 
new fingerprinting procedures being established in Sec. 103.2(e) after 
filing the Form N-400, Application for Naturalization.
12. Changes in Sec. 332.2
    In Sec. 332.2, the Service is amending the regulations to remove 
references to fingerprinting services being provided by non-profit 
organizations. The change is necessary because the new legislation 
relating to fingerprinting applicants and petitioners for immigration 
benefits prohibits the Service from accepting fingerprint cards 
prepared by any organization other than the Service, registered State 
or local law enforcement agencies, United States consular offices, or 
United States military installations abroad.
13. Changes in Sec. 335.2
    The FBI currently performs criminal background checks on applicants 
for naturalization and notifies the Service of the results of these 
checks. It has been Service policy to request applicants for 
naturalization to appear for examination on the application only after 
receiving such a notice from the FBI. In Sec. 335.2, the Service is 
amending the regulations to require a definitive response from the FBI 
on the criminal background check on an applicant for naturalization. A 
definitive response is defined as a response from the FBI that: (1) An 
applicant does not have an administrative or criminal record; (2) an 
applicant does not have an administrative or criminal record; or (3) an 
applicant's fingerprints cannot be classified for purposes of 
conducting a criminal background check, despite the

[[Page 12983]]

FBI's receipt of two properly prepared fingerprint cards. In the case 
of an applicant whose fingerprints cannot be classified, Service 
quality assurance procedures require the applicant to submit police 
clearances to the Service before final adjudication of the 
naturalization application.

Good Cause Exception

    The Service's implementation of this rule as an interim rule, with 
provision for post-promulgation public comments, is based on the ``good 
cause'' exceptions found at 5 U.S.C 553(b)(B) and (d)(3). The reason 
and necessity for immediate implementation of this interim rule without 
prior notice and comment is that new legislation prohibiting the 
Service from accepting fingerprint cards unless prepared by a Service 
office, a registered State or local law enforcement agency, a United 
States consular office at a United States embassy or consulate, or a 
United States military installation abroad, became effective December 
3, 1997.
    This rule is needed in order to establish the new fingerprinting 
process for applications and petitions filed on or after December 3, 
1997. Accordingly, any delays in the implementation of the new 
fingerprinting process required by this law will result in unnecessary 
delays in the filing and adjudication of applications and petitions for 
immigration benefits, without a corresponding public benefit. 
Furthermore, Congress addressed its intent to permit the Service to use 
interim regulatory authority in the early stages of this program. In 
particular, the Congressional Record of November 13, 1997, at page 
H10837 notes:

    An interim regulation may be employed in the early stages of the 
program, to implement all aspects of the program, including setting 
of a fingerprint fee, while the normal studies to justify a fee 
regulation are being conducted.

    For these reasons, the Commissioner has determined that delaying 
the implementation of this rule would be unnecessary and contrary to 
the public interest, and that there is good cause for dispensing with 
the requirements of prior notice. However, the Service welcomes public 
comment on this interim rule and will address those comments prior to 
the implementation of the final rule.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Commissioner of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, in 
accordance with the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 605(b)), has 
reviewed this regulation and, by approving it, certifies that this rule 
will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of 
small entities. This rule, which provides procedures for the taking and 
submission of fingerprints under the standards of the new legislation, 
relates to applicants and petitioners for immigration benefits and does 
not have a significant adverse effect on small businesses. Any adverse 
economic impact on DFS entities is necessitated by the new legislation 
which, as of December 3, 1997, prohibits the Service from accepting 
fingerprint cards unless prepared by the Service, a registered State 
and local law enforcement agency, a United States consular office at a 
United States embassy or consulate, or a United States military 
installation abroad.

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995

    This rule will not result in the expenditure by State, local and 
tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector, of $100 
million or more in any one year, and it will not significantly or 
uniquely affect small governments. Therefore, no actions were deemed 
necessary under the provisions of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 
1995.

Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996

    This rule is not a major rule as defined by section 804 of the 
Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Act of 1996. This rule will not 
result in an annual effect of the economy of $100 million or more; a 
major increase in costs or prices; or significant adverse effects on 
competition, employment, investment, productivity, innovation, or on 
the ability of United States-based companies to compete with foreign-
based companies in domestic and export markets.

Executive Order 12866

    This rule is considered by the Department of Justice, Immigration 
and Naturalization Service, to be a ``significant regulatory action'' 
under Executive Order 12866, section 3(f), Regulatory Planning and 
Review. Accordingly, this rule has been submitted to the Office of 
Management and Budget for review.

Executive Order 12612

    The regulation adopted herein will not have substantial direct 
effects on the States, on the relationship between the National 
Government and the States, or on the distribution of power and 
responsibilities among the various levels of government. Therefore, in 
accordance with Executive Order 12612, it is determined that this rule 
does not have sufficient federalism implications to warrant the 
preparation of a Federalism Assessment.

Executive Order 12988 Civil Justice Reform

    This interim rule meets the applicable standards set forth in 
sections 3(a) and 3(b)(2) of Executive Order 12988.

List of Subjects

8 CFR Part 103

    Administrative practice and procedure, Authority delegations 
(Government agencies), Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

8 CFR Part 204

    Administrative practice and procedure, Aliens, Employment, 
Immigration, Petitions.

8 CFR Part 208

    Administrative practice and procedure, Aliens, Immigration, 
Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

8 CFR Part 209

    Aliens, Immigration, Refugees.

8 CFR Part 244

    Administrative practice and procedure, Aliens.

8 CFR Part 245

    Aliens, Immigration, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

8 CFR Part 264

    Aliens, Registration and fingerprinting, Reporting and 
recordkeeping requirements.

8 CFR Part 299

    Immigration, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

8 CFR Part 316

    Citizenship and naturalization, Reporting and recordkeeping 
requirements.

8 CFR Part 332

    Citizenship and naturalization, Education, Reporting and 
recordkeeping requirements.

8 CFR Part 335

    Administrative practice and procedure, Authority delegations 
(Government agencies), Citizenship and naturalization, Reporting and 
recordkeeping requirements.

    Accordingly, chapter I of title 8 of the Code of Federal 
Regulations is amended as follows:

[[Page 12984]]

PART 103--POWERS AND DUTIES OF SERVICE OFFICERS; AVAILABILITY OF 
SERVICE RECORDS

    1. The authority citation for part 103 continues to read as 
follows:

    Authority: 5 U.S.C. 552, 552a; 8 U.S.C. 1101, 1103, 1201, 1252 
note, 1252b, 1304, 1356; 31 U.S.C. 9701; E.O. 12356, 47 FR 14874, 
15557, 3 CFR, 1982 Comp., p. 166; 8 CFR part 2.


Sec. 103.1  [Amended]

    2. Section 103.1 is amended by:
    a. Removing the ``; and'' at the end of paragraph (f)(3)(iii)(MM) 
and adding a period in its place; and by
    b. Removing paragraph (f)(3)(iii)(NN).
    3. Section 103.2 is amended by:
    a. Revising paragraph (a)(1);
    b. Revising paragraph (a)(7);
    c. Revising paragraph (b)(9);
    d. Revising the heading for paragraph (b)(10);
    e. Revising paragraph (b)(10)(i);
    f. Revising paragraph (b)(13);
    g. Revising paragraph (b)(14); and by
    h. Revising paragraph (e), to read as follows:


Sec. 103.2  Applications, petitions, and other documents.

    (a) Filing. (1) General. Every application, petition, appeal, 
motion, request, or other document submitted on the form prescribed by 
this chapter shall be executed and filed in accordance with the 
instructions on the form, such instructions (including where an 
application or petition should be filed) being hereby incorporated into 
the particular section of the regulations in this chapter requiring its 
submission. The form must be filed with the appropriate filing fee 
required by Sec. 103.7. Except as exempted by paragraph (e) of this 
section, forms which require an applicant, petitioner, sponsor, 
beneficiary, or other individual to complete Form FD-258, Applicant 
Card, must also be filed with the service fee for fingerprinting, as 
required by Sec. 103.7(b)(1), for each individual who requires 
fingerprinting. Filing fees and fingerprinting service fees are non-
refundable and, except as otherwise provided in this chapter, must be 
paid when the application is filed.
* * * * *
    (7) Receipt date.--(i) General. An application or petition received 
in a Service office shall be stamped to show the time and date of 
actual receipt and, unless otherwise specified in part 204 or part 245 
of this chapter, shall be regarded as properly filed when so stamped, 
if it is properly signed and executed and the required filing fee is 
attached or a waiver of the filing fee is granted. An application or 
petition which is not properly signed or is submitted with the wrong 
filing fee shall be rejected as improperly filed. Rejected applications 
and petitions, and ones in which the check or other financial 
instrument used to pay the filing fee is subsequently returned as non-
payable will not retain a filing date. An application or petition taken 
to a local Service office for the completion of biometric information 
prior to filing at a Service Center shall be considered received when 
physically received at a Service Center.
    (ii) Non-payment. If a check or other financial instrument used to 
pay a filing fee is subsequently returned as not payable, the remitter 
shall be notified and requested to pay the filing fee and associated 
service charge within 14 calendar days, without extension. If the 
application or petition is pending and these charges are not paid 
within 14 days, the application or petition shall be rejected as 
improperly filed. If the application or petition was already approved, 
and these charges are not paid, the approval shall be automatically 
revoked because it was improperly field. If the application or petition 
was already denied, revoked, or abandoned, that decision will not be 
affected by the non-payment of the filing or fingerprinting fee. New 
fees will be required with any new application or petition. Any fee and 
service charges collected as the result of collection activities or 
legal action on the prior application or petition shall be used to 
cover the cost of the previous rejection, revocation, or other action.
    (b) * * *
    (9) Request for appearance. An applicant, a petitioner, a sponsor, 
a beneficiary, or other individual residing in the United States at the 
time of filing an application or petition may be required to appear for 
fingerprinting or for an interview. A petitioner shall also be notified 
when a fingerprinting notice or an interview notice is mailed or issued 
to a beneficiary, sponsor, or other individual. The applicant, 
petitioner, sponsor, beneficiary, or other individual may appear as 
requested by the Service, or prior to the dates and times for 
fingerprinting or of the date and time of interview:
    (i) The individual to be fingerprinted or interviewed may, for good 
cause, request that the fingerprinting or interview be rescheduled; or
    (ii) The applicant or petitioner may withdraw the application or 
petition.
    (10) Effect of a request for initial or additional evidence for 
fingerprinting or interview rescheduling--(i) Effect on processing. The 
priority date of a properly filed petition shall not be affected by a 
request for missing initial evidence or request for other evidence. If 
an application or petition is missing required initial evidence, or an 
applicant, petitioner, sponsor, beneficiary, or other individual who 
requires fingerprinting requests that the fingerprinting appointment or 
interview be rescheduled, any time period imposed on Service processing 
will start over from the date of receipt of the required initial 
evidence or request for fingerprint or interview rescheduling. If the 
Service requests that the applicant or petitioner submit additional 
evidence or respond to other than a request for initial evidence, any 
time limitation imposed on the Service for processing will be suspended 
as of the date of request. It will resume at the same point where it 
stopped when the Service receives the requested evidence or response, 
or a request for a decision based on the evidence.
* * * * *
    (13) Effect of failure to respond to a request for evidence or 
appearance. If all requested initial evidence and requested additional 
evidence is not submitted by the required date, the application or 
petition shall be considered abandoned and, accordingly, shall be 
denied. Except as provided in Sec. 335.6 of this chapter, if an 
individual requested to appear for fingerprinting or for an interview 
does not appear, the Service does not receive his or her request for 
rescheduling by the date of the fingerprinting appointment or 
interview, or the applicant or petitioner has not withdrawn the 
application or petition, the application or petition shall be 
considered abandoned and, accordingly, shall be denied.
    (14) Effect of request for decision. Where an applicant or 
petitioner does not submit all requested additional evidence and 
requests a decision based on the evidence already submitted, a decision 
shall be issued based on the record. Failure to submit requested 
evidence which precludes a material line of inquiry shall be grounds 
for denying the application or petition. Failure to appear for required 
fingerprinting or for a required interview, or to give required 
testimony, shall result in the denial of the related application or 
petition.
* * * * *
    (e) Fingerprinting--(1) General. Service regulations in this 
chapter, including the instructions to benefit applications and 
petitions, require certain applicants, petitioners, beneficiaries, 
sponsors, and other individuals to be fingerprinted on Form

[[Page 12985]]

FD-258, Applicant Card, for the purpose of conducting criminal 
background checks. On and after December 3, 1997, the Service will 
accept Form FD-258, Applicant Card, only if prepared by a Service 
office, a registered State or local law enforcement agency designated 
by a cooperative agreement with the Service to provide fingerprinting 
services (DLEA), a United States consular office at United States 
embassies and consulates, or a United States military installation 
abroad.
    (2) Fingerprinting individuals residing in the United States. 
Beginning on December 3, 1997, for naturalization applications, and on 
March 29, 1998, for all other applications and petitions, applications 
and petitions for immigration benefits shall be filed as prescribed in 
this chapter, without completed Form FD-258, Applicant Card. After the 
filing of an application or petion, the Service will issue a notice to 
all individuals who require fingerprinting and who are residing in the 
United States, as defined in section 101(a)(38) of the Act, and request 
their appearance for fingerprinting at a Service office or other 
location designated by the Service, to complete Form FD-258, Applicant 
Card, as prescribed in paragraph (b)(9) of this section.
    (3) Fingerprinting individuals residing abroad. Individuals who 
require fingerprinting and whose place of residence is outside of the 
United States, must submit a properly completed Form FD-258, Applicant 
Card, at the time of filing the application or petition for immigration 
benefits. In the case of individuals who reside abroad, a properly 
completed Form FD-258, Applicant Card, is one prepared by the Service, 
a United States consular office at a United States embassy or consulate 
or a United States military installation abroad. If an individual who 
requires fingerprinting and is residing abroad fails to submit a 
properly completed Form FD-258, Applicant Card, at the time of filing 
an application or petition, the Service will issue a notice to the 
individual requesting submission of a properly completed Form FD-258, 
Applicant Card. The applicant or petitioner will also be notified of 
the request for submission of a properly completed Form FD-258, 
Applicant Card. Failure to submit a properly completed Form FD-258, 
Applicant Card, in response to such a request within the time allotted 
in the notice will result in denial of the application or petition for 
failure to submit a properly completed Form FD-258, Applicant Card. 
There is no appeal from denial of an application or petition for 
failure to submit a properly completed Form FD-258, Applicant Card. A 
motion to re-open an application or petition denied for failure to 
submit a properly completed Form FD-258, Applicant Card, will be 
granted only on proof that:
    (i) A properly completed Form FD-258, Applicant Card, was submitted 
at the time of filing the application or petition;
    (ii) A properly completed Form FD-258, Applicant Card, was 
submitted in response to the notice within the time allotted in the 
notice; or
    (iii) The notice was sent to an address other than the address on 
the application or petition, or the notice of representation, or that 
the applicant or petitioner notified the Service, in writing, of a 
change of address or change of representation subsequent to filing and 
before the notice was sent and the Service's notice was not sent to the 
new address.
    (4) Submission of service fee for fingerprinting--(i) General. The 
Service will charge a fee, as prescribed in Sec. 103.7(b)(1), for 
fingerprinting at a Service office or a registered State or local law 
enforcement agency designated by a cooperative agreement with the 
Service to provide fingerprinting services. Applications and petitions 
for immigration benefits shall be submitted with the service fee for 
fingerprinting for all individuals who require fingerprinting and who 
reside in the United States at the time of filing the application or 
petition.
    (ii) Exemptions--(A) Individual residing abroad. Individuals who 
require fingerprinting and who reside outside of the United States at 
the time of filing an application or petition for immigration benefits 
are exempt from the requirement to submit the service fee for 
fingerprinting with the application or petition for immigration 
benefits.
    (B) Asylum applicants. Asylum applicants are exempt from the 
requirement to submit the service fee for fingerprinting with the 
application for asylum.
    (iii) Insufficient service fee for fingerprinting; incorrect fees. 
Applications and petitions for immigration benefits received by the 
Service without the correct service fee for fingerprinting will not be 
rejected as improperly filed, pursuant to paragraph (a)(7)(i) of this 
section. However, the application or petition will not continue 
processing and the Service will not issue a notice requesting 
appearance for fingerprinting to the individuals who require 
fingerprinting until the correct service fee for fingerprinting has 
been submitted. The Service will notify the remitter of the filing fee 
for the application or petition of the additional amount required for 
the fingerprinting service fee and request submission of the correct 
fee. The Service will also notify the applicant or petitioner, and, 
when appropriate, the applicant or petitioner's representative, as 
defined in paragraph (a)(3) of this section, of the deficiency. Failure 
to submit the correct fee for fingerprinting in response to a notice of 
deficiency within the time allotted in the notice will result in denial 
of the application or petition for failure to submit the correct 
service fee for fingerprinting. There is no appeal from the denial of 
an application or petition for failure to submit the correct service 
fee for fingerprinting. A motion to re-open an application or petition 
denied for failure to submit the correct service fee for fingerprinting 
will be granted only on proof that:
    (A) The correct service fee for fingerprinting was submitted at the 
time of filing the application or petition;
    (B) The correct service fee for fingerprinting was submitted in 
response to the notice of deficiency within the time allotted in the 
notice; or
    (C) The notice of deficiency was sent to an address other than the 
address on the application or petition, or the notice of 
representation, or that the applicant or petitioner notified the 
Service, in writing, of a change of address or change of representation 
subsequent to filing and before the notice of deficiency was sent and 
the Service's notice of deficiency was not sent to the new address.
    (iv) Non-payment of service fee for fingerprinting. If a check or 
other financial instrument used to pay a service fee for fingerprinting 
is subsequently returned as not payable, the remitter shall be notified 
and requested to pay the correct service fee for fingerprinting and any 
associated service charges within 14 calendar days. The Service will 
also notify the applicant or petitioner and, when appropriate, the 
applicant or petitioner's representative as defined in paragraph (a)(3) 
of this section, of the non-payment and request to pay. If the correct 
service fee for fingerprinting and associated service charges are not 
paid within 14 calendar days, the application or petition will be 
denied for failure to submit the correct service fee for 
fingerprinting.
    4. In Sec. 103.7, paragraph (b)(1) is amended by adding the entry 
``For fingerprinting by the Service'' before the entry ``DCL System 
Costs Fee'' to the listing of fees, to read as follows:

[[Page 12986]]

Sec. 103.7  Fees.

* * * * *
    (b) * * *
    (1) * * *
* * * * *
For fingerprinting by the Service. A service fee of $25 will be 
charged by the Service for fingerprinting each applicant, 
petitioner, sponsor, or other individual who is required to complete 
Form FD-258 in connection with an application or petition for an 
immigration benefit (other than asylum) and whose residence is in 
the United States, as defined in section 101(a)(38) of the Act.
* * * * *


Sec. 103.7  [Amended]

    5. In Sec. 103.7, paragraph (b)(1) is amended by removing the entry 
for ``Form I-850'' from the listing of fees.

PART 204--IMMIGRANT PETITIONS

    6. The authority citation for part 204 is revised to read as 
follows:

    Authority: 8 U.S.C. 1101, 1103, 1151, 1153, 1154, 1182, 1186a, 
1255, 1641; 8 CFR part 2.

    7. Section 204.3 is amended by:
    a. Adding the word ``and'' at the end of paragraph (c)(1)(iii);
    b. Removing paragraph (c)(1)(iv);
    c. Redesignating paragraph (c)(1)(v) as paragraph (c)(1)(iv);
    d. Removing paragraph (c)(1)(vi); and
    e. Adding a new paragraph (c)(3), to read as follows:


Sec. 204.3  Orphans.

* * * * *
    (c) * * *
    (3) After receipt of a properly filed advanced processing 
application, the Service will fingerprint each member of the married 
prospective adoptive couple or the unmarried prospective adoptive 
parent, as prescribed in Sec. 103.2(e) of this chapter. The Service 
will also fingerprint each additional adult member of the prospective 
adoptive parents' household, as prescribed in Sec. 103.2(e) of this 
chapter. The Service may waive the requirement that each additional 
adult member of the prospective adoptive parents' household be 
fingerprinted when it determines that such adult is physically unable 
to be fingerprinted because of age or medical condition.
* * * * *
    8. Section 204.4 is amended by:
    a. Removing paragraph (f)(1)(iv); and
    b. Revising the second sentence of paragraph (d)(1), to read as 
follows:


Sec. 204.4  Amerasian child of a United States citizen.

* * * * *
    (d) * * *
    (1) * * * If the preliminary processing is completed in a 
satisfactory manner, the director shall advise the petitioner to submit 
the documentary evidence required in paragraph (f)(1) of this section 
and shall fingerprint the sponsor in accordance with Sec. 103.2(e) of 
this chapter. * * *
* * * * *

PART 208--PROCEDURES FOR ASYLUM AND WITHHOLDING OF REMOVAL

    9. The authority citation for part 208 continues to read as 
follows:

    Authority: 8 U.S.C. 1103, 1158, 1226, 1252, 1282; 8 CFR part 2.

    10. Section 208.7 is amended by revising paragraph (a)(2), to read 
as follows:


Sec. 208.7  Employment authorization.

    (a) * * *
    (2) The time periods within which the alien may not apply for 
employment authorization and within which the Service must respond to 
any such application and within which the asylum application must be 
adjudicated pursuant to section 208(d)(5)(A)(iii) of the Act shall 
begin when the alien has filed a complete asylum application in 
accordance with Secs. 208.3 and 208.4. Any delay requested or caused by 
the applicant shall not be counted as part of these time periods, 
including delays caused by failure without good cause to follow the 
requirements for fingerprint processing. Such time periods shall also 
be extended by the equivalent of the time between issuance of a request 
for evidence pursuant to Sec. 103.2(b)(8) of this chapter and the 
receipt of the applicant's response to such request.
* * * * *
    11. Section 208.10 is revised to read as follows:


Sec. 208.10  Failure to appear at an interview before an asylum officer 
or failure to follow requirements for fingerprint processing.

    Failure to appear for a scheduled interview without prior 
authorization may result in dismissal of the application or waiver of 
the right to an interview. Failure to comply with fingerprint 
processing requirements without good cause may result in dismissal of 
the application or waiver of the right to an adjudication by an asylum 
officer. Failure to appear shall be excused if the notice of the 
interview or fingerprint appointment was not mailed to the applicant's 
current address and such address had been provided to the Office of 
International Affairs by the applicant prior to the date of mailing in 
accordance with section 265 of the Act and regulations promulgated 
thereunder, unless the asylum officer determines that the applicant 
received reasonable notice of the interview or fingerprinting 
appointment. Failure to appear at the interview or fingerprint 
appointment will be excused if the applicant demonstrates that such 
failure was the result of exceptional circumstances.
    12. Section 208.14 is amended by revising paragraph (b)(2), to read 
as follows:


Sec. 208.14  Approval, denial, or referral of application.

* * * * *
    (b) * * *
    (2) If the alien appears to be deportable, excludable or removable 
under section 240 of the Act, the asylum officer shall either grant 
asylum or refer the application to an immigration judge for 
adjudication in deportation, exclusion, or removal proceedings. An 
asylum officer may refer such an application after an interview 
conducted in accordance with Sec. 208.9, or if, in accordance with 
Sec. 208.10, the applicant is deemed to have waived his or her right to 
an interview or an adjudication by an asylum officer.
* * * * *

PART 209--ADJUSTMENT OF STATUS OF REFUGEES AND ALIENS GRANTED 
ASYLUM

    12. The authority citation for part 209 continues to read as 
follows:

    Authority: 8 U.S.C. 1101, 1103, 1157, 1158, 1159, 1228, 1252, 
1282; 8 CFR part 2.

    13. Section 209.1 is amended by revising the third sentence of 
paragraph (b), to read as follows:


Sec. 209.1  Admission for permanent residence after 1 year.

* * * * *
    (b) * * * If the refugee entrant has been physically present in the 
United States for at least 1 year, Form G-325A, Biographic Information, 
will be processed, and the refugee entrant shall be fingerprinted on 
Form FD-258, Applicant Card, as prescribed in Sec. 103.2(e) of this 
chapter. * * *
    14. Section 209.2 is amended by removing the second sentence of 
paragraph (c), and adding two sentences in its place, to read as 
follows:


Sec. 209.2  Adjustment of status of alien granted asylum.

* * * * *
    (c) * * * A separate application must be filed by each alien. If 
the alien is 14 years of age or older, the application must be 
accompanied by a completed Form G-325A, Biographic Information, and the 
alien shall be fingerprinted on Form FD-258, Applicant Card, as

[[Page 12987]]

prescribed in Sec. 103.2(e) of this chapter. * * *
* * * * *

PART 244--TEMPORARY PROTECTED STATUS FOR NATIONAL OF DESIGNATED 
STATES

    15. The authority citation for part 244 continues to read as 
follows:

    Authority: 8 U.S.C. 1103, 1254, 1254a note, 8 CFR part 2.

    16. Section 244.6 is revised to read as follows:


Sec. 244.6  Application.

    An application for Temporary Protected Status shall be made in 
accordance with Sec. 103.2 of this chapter except as provided herein. 
Each application must be filed with the filing and fingerprinting fees, 
as provided in Sec. 103.7 of this chapter, by each individual seeking 
temporary protected status, except that the filing fee for the Form I-
765 will be charged only for those aliens who are nationals of El 
Salvador, and are between the ages of 14 and 65 (inclusive), and are 
requesting work authorization. Each application must consist of a 
completed Form I-821, Application for temporary protected status, Form 
I-765, Application for Employment Authorization, two identification 
photographs (1\1/2\''  x  1\1/2\''), and supporting evidence as 
provided in Sec. 240.9 of this chapter. Every applicant who is 14 years 
of age or older shall be fingerprinted on Form FD-258, Applicant Card, 
as prescribed in Sec. 103.2(e) of this chapter.

PART 245--ADJUSTMENT OF STATUS TO THAT OF PERSON ADMITTED FOR 
PERMANENT RESIDENCE

    17. The authority citation for part 245 continues to read as 
follows:

    Authority: 8 U.S.C. 1101, 1103, 1182, 1255; 8 CFR part 2.

    18. Section 245.7 is amended by revising paragraph (a), to read as 
follows:


Sec. 245.7  Adjustment of status of certain Soviet and Indochinese 
parolees under the Foreign Operations Appropriations Act for Fiscal 
Year 1990 (Pub. L. 101-167).

    (a) Application. Each person applying for benefits under section 
599E of Public Law 101-167 (103 Stat. 1195, 1263) must file Form I-485, 
Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, with the 
director having jurisdiction over the applicant's place of residence 
and must pay the appropriate filing and fingerprinting fee, as 
prescribed in Sec. 103.7 of this chapter. Each application shall be 
accompanied by Form I-643, Health and Human Services Statistical Data 
for Refugee/Asylee Adjusting Status, and the results of a medical 
examination given in accordance with Sec. 245.8. In addition, if the 
applicant has reached his or her 14th birthday but is not over 79 years 
of age, the application shall be accompanied by a completed Form G-
325A, Biographic Information, and the applicant shall be fingerprinted 
on Form FD-258, Applicant Card, as prescribed in Sec. 103.2(e) of this 
chapter.
* * * * *

PART 264--REGISTRATION AND FINGERPRINTING OF ALIENS IN THE UNITED 
STATES

    19. The authority citation for part 264 continues to read as 
follows:

    Authority: 8 U.S.C. 1103, 1201, 1201a, 1301-1305.

    20. Section 264.2 is amended by:
    a. Removing and reserving paragraph (c)(1)(iii);
    b. Removing and reserving paragraph (c)(2)(iii);
    c. Removing the phrase ``, or his/her fingerprints on Form FD-258'' 
from paragraph (c)(3);
    d. Redesignating paragraphs (d) through (h) as paragraphs (e) 
through (i), respectively; and by
    e. Adding a new paragraph (d), to read as follows:


Sec. 264.2  Application for creation of record of permanent residence.

* * * * *
    (d) Fingerprinting. After filing an application, each applicant 14 
years of age or older shall be fingerprinted on Form FD-258, Applicant 
Card, as prescribed in Sec. 103.2(e) of this chapter.
* * * * *
    21. Section 264.5 is amended by:
    a. Removing paragraph (e)(1)(v);
    b. Redesignating paragraphs (e)(3)(i) and (e)(3)(ii) as paragraphs 
(e)(3)(ii) and (e)(3)(iii);
    c. Adding the word ``fingerprinting,'' immediately after the phrase 
``person filing,'' in newly redesignated paragraph (e)(3)(iii); and by
    d. Adding a new paragraph (e)(3)(i), to read as follows:


Sec. 264.5  Application for a replacement Alien Registration Card.

* * * * *
    (e) * * *
    (3) * * *
    (i) Fingerprinting. After filing an I-90 application, each 
applicant shall be fingerprinted on Form FD-258, Applicant Card, as 
prescribed in Sec. 103.2(e) of this chapter.
* * * * *

PART 299--IMMIGRATION FORMS

    2. The authority citation for part 299 continues to read as 
follows:

    Authority: 8 U.S.C. 1101, 1103, 8 CFR part 2.


Sec. 299.1  [Amended]

    23. Section 299.1 is amended in the table by removing the entries 
for Form ``I-850'' and ``I-850A''.


Sec. 299.5  [Amended]

    24. Section 299.5 is amended in the table by removing the entries 
for Forms ``I-850'' and ``I-850A''.

PART 316--GENERAL REQUIREMENTS FOR NATURALIZATION

    25. The authority citation for part 316 continues to read as 
follows:

    Authority: 8 U.S.C. 1103, 1181, 1182, 1443, 1447; 8 CFR part 2.

    26. Section 316.4 is amended by:
    a. Adding the word ``and'' at the end of paragraph (a)(2);
    b. Removing paragraph (a)(3);
    c. Redesignating paragraph (a)(4) as paragraph (a)(3);
    d. Redesignating paragraph (b) as paragraph (c); and by
    e. Adding a new paragraph (b), to read as follows:


Sec. 316.4  Application; documents.

* * * * *
    (b) Each applicant who files Form N-400, Application for 
Naturalization, shall be fingerprinted on Form FD-258, Applicant Card, 
as prescribed in Sec. 103.2(e) of this chapter.
* * * * *

PART 332--NATURALIZATION ADMINISTRATION

    27. The authority citation for part 332 continues to read as 
follows:

    Authority: 8 U.S.C. 1103, 1443, 1447.


Sec. 332.2  [Amended]

    28. Section 332.2 is amended by:
    a. Removing the words ``and fingerprinting'' from the section 
heading; and by
    b. Removing the phrase ``, fingerprinting services or both'' from 
the end of the first sentence.

PART 335--EXAMINATION ON APPLICATION FOR NATURALIZATION

    29. The authority citation for part 335 continues to read as 
follows:

    Authority: 8 U.S.C. 1103, 1443, 1147.

    30. Section 335.2 is amended by:
    a. Redesignating paragraphs (b) through (e) as paragraphs (c) 
through (f), respectively; and by

[[Page 12988]]

    b. Adding a new paragraph (b), to read as follows:


Sec. 335.2  Examination of applicant.

* * * * *
    (b) Completion of criminal background checks before examination. 
The Service will notify applicants for naturalization to appear before 
a Service officer for initial examination on the naturalization 
application only after the Service has received a definitive response 
from the Federal Bureau of Investigation that a full criminal 
background check of an applicant has been completed. A definitive 
response that a full criminal background check on an applicant has been 
completed includes:
    (1) Confirmation from the Federal Bureau of Investigation that an 
applicant does not have an administrative or a criminal record;
    (2) Confirmation from the Federal Bureau of Investigation that an 
applicant has an administrative or a criminal record; or
    (3) Confirmation from the Federal Bureau of Investigation that two 
properly prepared fingerprint cards (Form FD-258) have been determined 
unclassifiable for the purpose of conducting a criminal background 
check and have been rejected.
* * * * *
    Dated: March 10, 1998.
Doris Meissner,
Commissioner, Immigration, and Naturalization Service.
[FR Doc. 98-6828 Filed 3-16-98; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4410-10-M