The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has a separate department that handles immigration called the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The federal agency has a website, a phone service, and a number of field locations. The website comprehensively covers the basics of immigration to the U.S. and also has many resources for applicants and test-takers. The phone service offers automated and live assistance. The physical locations provide assistance and interview the applicants.
A field office interviews applicants who aren’t seeking asylum. The federal agency arranges these offices into Districts and Regions. A District usually has multiple office locations, each with its own director. Some districts cover counties from different States. Above the districts are the four regions: Western, Central, Southeast, and Northeast.
The Helena Field Office
The Helena field office serves the State of Montana and it’s located in the Central Region and Denver District. The Denver District has jurisdiction over Montana, Colorado, Utah, Southern Idaho, and Wyoming. The address of the office is as follows:
Helena (HEL) 754 River Rock Drive Suite #101 Helena, MT 59602
Note that the USCIS sometimes moves cases to other offices to improve processing times. In this case, the communication with you may be shifted to the new location as well. However, in the case of biometrics, you’ll still be invited to the location that’s nearest to yours.
After submitting your application, you can follow your case online with the case status tool. This tool uses the received Receipt Number you receive from USCIS to update you on your application. You can also update your address online in case it changes during the processing stage. Note that updating your address with the Postal Service won’t update it with the agency.
Case Processing Times
There’s a lot of variation in the processing times, so it’s useful to check them for your specific office and application type (I-95, N-600, etc.). Like the case status check, you can check the processing times online as well. The USCIS updates these times monthly and they’re based on data from two months before the update. Here are the times are given by the agency for Helena, Montana, office:
- N-400 (Naturalization): 11 to 17.5 months
- N-600 (Certificate of Citizenship): 6 to 15 months
- N-600K (Citizenship and Issuance of Certificate): 10 to 23.5 months
The variation in time is visible for all the examples given above. For these three forms and 11 other types, the first figure indicates the time needed for half of the cases and the second one for 93 pc of them. For the other form types, the agency uses a different calculation method with an upper limit of 130 pc of the processing duration.
If you need help, the Ask Emma chat tool can help you get it quickly. The service is available on the USCIS site in English and Spanish languages. Other sources of information include the contact center at 800-375-5283 and the service for people with hearing/ speech issues at 800-767-1833. If you’ve been a victim of immigration fraud, you can report that fraud online.