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Direct consular filing is no longer an option in Manila

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I read that Trump was closing all USCIS international offices and Manila was one of the first to close. I read that they were closing in July and so I went online to make an appointment this week. DCF can take 3 months vs 12 months mailing it in to Chicago. No appointments available. I emailed them and they replied: Yes, we regret to inform you that all USCIS International Offices, including Manila, will be closing permanently in the near future. To assure your I130 petition is processed without delay you may mail the completed I130 petition to the USCIS lockbox in the United States. More closure information will be forthcoming on our website. You can find additional filing information on the form I130 webpage. Thank you for your understanding and please accept our apologies for any inconvenience,


USCIS Manila Field Office

(There is no information on their website about this.)

When I went looking for information on this, the clearest explanation I could find was on a lawyer's website.  They are advertising their business as a way to help you through this.  I do not know this firm or anything about them and am not advertising them.  Only offering this link as a place to give a touch of clarity to the situation.

Yes, I find it ironic that they say "To assure your I130 petition is processed without delay you may mail...", but by mailing it in vs directly filing in Manila guarantees a delay of at least 7 months.

May 5, 2019 was the last day to directly file. There is no information on their website about this, but on another visa forum, people said that they already had an appointment scheduled and uscis contacted them and said they would have to cancel the appointment and mail it in. There has been no information provided by USCIS (through press releases or info on their website) about the scheduled dates of office closings.

They finally make a formal announcement on their website:
USCIS will permanently close its field office in Manila, Philippines, on July 5, 2019. 


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