USCIS Announces Plans to Raise Filing Fees Again

By Andrew M. Wilson

November 11, 2019 | Immigration Blog

USCIS is publishing a proposed rulemaking to raise filing fees again.  Citing increased screening and vetting procedures, fraud detection efforts and the need to "ensure recovery of the full cost of administering the nation's immigration laws", the overall fee schedule will go up by a weighted average of 21%.  (USCIS last updated its fee schedule in FY 2017 by a weighted average increase of 21%)

As part of the proposal, different I-129 filings will have different filing fees (i.e. H-1B $560; L-1 $815; O-1 $715)  Also, I-765s and I-131s will no longer be part of one lumped I-485 filing.  They will be separate, and an I-485 filing that includes the I-765 and I-131 will now be a filing fee of $2,195.

USCIS is also looking to change the premium processing adjudication time from 15 calendar days to 15 business days.  

This feels like an example of the further disconnect between the needs of U.S. employers and our current immigration system.  It feels more punitive than budgetary driven.  

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