Completing an Unprecedented 10 Million Immigration Cases in Fiscal Year 2023

Client Alert!

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) released end of fiscal year (FY) 2023 data that illustrate the agency’s progress in meeting its strategic priorities. The USCIS workforce has worked tirelessly over the past year to uphold America’s promise as a nation of welcome and possibility by reducing backlogs, improving customer experience, addressing humanitarian needs, and strengthening employment-based immigration.

Reducing Backlogs
In FY 2023, USCIS received 10.9 million filings and completed more than 10 million pending cases– both record-breaking numbers in the agency’s history. In doing so, USCIS reduced overall backlogs by 15%. Among USCIS’ record number of case completions in FY 2023, the agency administered the Oath of Allegiance to more than 878,500 new U.S. citizens, including 12,000 members of the military, effectively eliminating the backlog of naturalization applications. The median processing time for naturalization applicants decreased from 10.5 months to 6.1 months by the end of the fiscal year, achieving the agency’s longstanding goal and significantly reducing waiting times for most individuals seeking U.S. citizenship.

Improving Customer Experience
USCIS implemented several new technology solutions that meaningfully advance the customer experience for those navigating our immigration system. The new self-service tool for online rescheduling of biometrics appointments was used to reschedule over 33,000 such appointments in FY 2023. The new enterprise change of address capabilities enabled over 430,000 address changes to be submitted online through December 2023. This tool is expected to reduce USCIS Contact Center phone inquiries by up to 31%, or approximately 1.5 million inquiries annually. From August to September 2023, USCIS received more than 16,000 field office appointment requests using the online request form, while a new text-ahead capability for callers to our 1-800 number gives them a more predictable call-back window and reduces missed calls.

Strengthening Immigration for Workers and Employers
In FY 2023, USCIS and the Department of State helped meet the needs of U.S. employers by issuing more than 192,000 employment-based immigrant visas – far above the pre-pandemic number – and, for the second year running ensured that no available visas went unused. The agency further supported U.S. employers and noncitizen workers in FY 2023 by increasing the maximum validity period of Employment Authorization Documents (EADs) to five years for adjustment of status applicants. They clarified eligibility for a range of immigration services, including the International Entrepreneur Rule, the EB-1 immigrant visa for individuals of extraordinary ability and outstanding professors and researchers, and the waiver of the two-year foreign residence requirement for J-1 cultural and educational exchange visitors (including foreign medical graduates). They proposed a new rule to strengthen worker protections and the integrity of the H-2 temporary worker program.

Fulfilling Our Humanitarian Mission
USCIS interviewed over 100,000 refugee applicants – more than double the amount completed in the previous fiscal year – resulting in the admission and resettlement of over 60,000 refugees. As of the end of FY 2023, USCIS completed more than 52,000 asylum cases; this included prioritizing process of asylum cases for Afghan alliance and their families. USCIS also completed a record-breaking 146,000 credible fear and reasonable fear screenings of individuals expressing a fear of return after being encountered at the border.

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Dana Davidson - Full Bio

Dana T. Davidson holds degrees from the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law and State University of New York at Stony Brook and has been practicing immigration law since 2003 in New York and nationwide. She represents corporations, individuals, and families in a broad range of immigration matters. Attorney Davidson has offices in New York City and Glen Cove.


  • Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, Yeshiva University, New York, New York
  • Juris Doctor – 1988
  • Honors: Moot Court Board, Member, Judge
  • State University of New York at Stony Brook, Stony Brook, New York
  • Bachelor of Arts – 1982
  • Major: Political Science
  • Concentration: Business

Pro-Bono Activities

  • Safe Passage Project, Volunteer Attorney, 2013-Present
  • Educating the Educators, Founder, 2012-Present
  • Momentum Project, Board Member, 1991-1994 Bar Admission
  • New York, Eastern District
  • New York, Southern District
  • Washington, D.C.

Speaking Engagements
  • AILA RDC-EMEA Spring Conference 2018, Berlin, Germany, Speaker on “Public Charge” panel
  • AILA RDC-EMEA Fall Conference 2018, Johannesburg, South Africa, Speaker: “Practice Management in the New Age” panel
  • AILA RDC-EMEA Spring Conference 2018, Madrid, Spain, Speaker: “El Traje de Luces: Self-Sponsored Petitions – EB-1A and NIW”  AILA RDC-EMEA Spring Conference 2017, Brussels, Belgium, Speaker: “Continuing Blanket L Challenges”
  • Safe Passage Project, March 2017, Speaker: “Representing Unaccompanied Minors: Special Immigrant Juvenile Status and the Effects of President Trump’s Executive Orders on Immigration”
  • AILA RDC-EMEA Fall Conference 2016, Speaker: “It’s Not About Money: I-864”
  • AILA RDC-EMEA Spring Conference 2016, Vienna, Austria, Speaker: “K-Visa: Differences Between K-1 and I-130 Processing”
  • New York Institute of Technology’s Center for Entrepreneurship, January 2016, Entrepreneur/Executive-in-Residence
  • AILA Fall Conference 2015, London, UK, Speaker: Impact of joint sponsors on family-based cases
  • Goldman-Sachs 10,000 Small Business Education Program, October 2014, “What is required to grow a business?”
  • Dowling College, May 2013, Keynote Speaker at the first annual Latino Summit at Dowling College
  • International Taxation Conference, 2010