What is Special Registration?
Special Registration, or the National Security Entry-Exit Registration System (NSEERS) is a
registration system which previously targeted certain nonimmigrants of mostly Middle Eastern or Muslim countries,
that enables the government keep track of the arrival and departure of these nonimmigrants who come
to the U.S. every year. NSEERS did formerly involve a "call in" component that required foreign
nationals to report to local INS, then USCIS (U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services)
offices. The NSEERS program was taken over by ICE (Immigration & Customs Enforcement)
in December 2003. ICE issued a notice discontinuing blanket "call in" registration (the
30 day and annual re-registration requirements), but all other requirements, such as port of entry
and port of exit registration with CBP (Customs & Border Protection), continued to apply.
ICE also provided for a process for applications for waiver of special registration requirements.
NSEERS special registration involves being fingerprinted, photographed and interviewed at the port
of entry and exit, but is separate from and in addition to "US-VISIT" registration that is being
increasingly implemented and affects all nonimmigrants.
Exit special registration compliance required that nonimmigrants depart ONLY at one of the following
specially designated ports of departure and appear
at the special registration desk/booth/office. NOTE: Until elimination of the NSEERS
special registration program, nonimmigrants subject to special registration were required to depart from a designated port of exit
and undergo re-registration at that port of exit.
On our website:
On the DHS website: (Special Registration was transferred from USCIS to ICE in December 2003)
- referenced web pages have since been removed from DHS website
Other government websites:
Change of address for Special Registration:
Under USCIS regulations, all nonimmigrants who were subject to special registration were required to notify
USCIS of changes of employment or school, as well as address,
using form AR-11SR. For for a copy of form AR-11SR and mailing instructions,
USCIS website. NSEERS change of employment or school reporting requirements no longer in effect as of 4/28/11; however all foreign nationals are required to notify USCIS of changes of address using Form AR-11. For more information, see our change of address page.