No matter who is the Subject of Record, if you request records about yourself or if you request records about another person and on his/her behalf, it is obligatory to verify the identity of the Subject of Record by signing Form G-639. It is possible to sign the form either with Notarized Affidavit or with Sworn Declaration. When the Subject of Record is another person, the signature will also confirm his/her consent that USCIS may release his/her records to you.
Part 4 “Verification of Identity and Subject of Record Consent” contains section “Signature and Notarized Affidavit or Declaration of the Subject Record”. You should select only one box in this section either 8.a, Notarized Affidavit of Identity, or 8.b, Declaration Under Penalty of Perjury.
The Subject of Record must provide a signature in item 8.a or 8.b, regardless if you submit Form G-639 yourself or another person completes the request on your behalf. In both cases, you may choose to complete either item 8.a or 8.b, in your discretion.
Notarized Affidavit of Identity is a verified statement made by the Subject of Record and witnessed by a notary. If you choose to sign Form G-639 online with a Notarized Affidavit, item 8.a, you will have to additionally involve a notary public who will certify your signature. In this case, the following fields must be filled in the presence of a notary public: signature of the Subject of Record and date of signature. All the other fields in item 8.a will be filled by the notary public himself.
Declaration Under Penalty of Perjury is a sworn statement of fact. As declared in the Form G-639 itself, by signing 8.b you certify, swear, or affirm, under penalty of perjury under the laws of the USA that the information in the request is complete, true, and correct. Most individuals choose to complete item 8.b, as thus there is no need to spent time and money for notary public engagement. Only signature of the Subject of Record and date of signature must be indicated in the item.
In both cases, whether you sign with Notarized Affidavit or with Sworn Declaration, you give consent to USCIS to release the requested records to the requestor and to pay all costs incurred for search, duplication, and review of documents up to $25. To find out more information about fees involved please read our article “How much is a Freedom of Information/Privacy (FOIA) Request”.