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USCIS Proposes Fee Adjustments to Various Petitions

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Pasricha & Patel Takeaways:

The Department of Homeland Security and the USCIS have announced that it is proposing rule changes to the USCIS fee schedule. More specifically, DHS is proposing that it is adjusting USCIS fees by a weighted increase of 21 percent; and adding new fees; and also making other changes, such as revising forms, and introducing various new forms.

DHS explains in its announcement that the USCIS is required to examine incoming and outgoing expenditures and adjust its fees accordingly. DHS says that these proposed fee adjustments would ensure that more applicants cover the true costs of their applications and minimize subsidies from an already over-extended system.

Some highlights of these fee adjustments include charging different filing fees for different visa categories that use the Form I-129 (i.e. H-1B temporary worker base filing fee would rise from $460.00 to $560.00; while L-1 intracompany transfer worker filing fee would rise from $460.00 to $815.00); the N-400 naturalization application fee would rise from $640.00 to $1,170.00.

On the other hand, the USCIS would reduce the I-90 application to renew/replace lawful permanent resident card from $455.00 to $415.00. And it would reduce the biometric/fingerprinting fee from $85.00 to $30.00.

And for the first time ever, the DHS is proposing filing fee of $50.00 for the Form I-589, application for asylum and for withholding of removal.

The proposed rule will be published in the Federal Register on November 14, 2019, and comments are due 30 days after its publication.

It will be interesting to see what kind of feedback the DHS and USCIS receives from these fee adjustments. Please don’t hesitate to regularly check with our website for any updates about this, as well as other immigration-related updates.