The Department of Homeland Security has announced new application fees that will take effect on October 2, 2020. This new announcement will increase the application fees for most application types. USCIS is a for profit agency that uses application fees to fund the agency and its employees.

The increases are listed below:

Citizenship

Starting on October 2, legal permanent residents who are applying for citizenship will now have to pay $1160 if they are submitted online citizenship applications and $1170 if they are submitting paper citizenship applications. This is a dramatic increase from the $640 current application fees. You can find out more about citizenship by clicking here.

Employment Based Applications

Currently, the fee for all employment based applications are $460, this applies to all H-1B, H-2A/B, L visas, O visas, and TN visas. DHS plans to now separate the standard Form I-129 Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker into different forms for different visa types, with different costs for each application type. The new fees are listed below:

Currently, employers with more than 50 employees, more than 50% of whom are in H-1B or L-1 status, must pay an additional $4,000 fee for each initial and change-of-employer H-1B petition and $4,500 for each such L-1 petition. Under the new rules, affected employers must pay this fee with each H-1B or L-1 extension of stay, in addition to initial filings and changes of employer.

Family Based Applications

Form I-130 application for family members currently costs $535 per application. Under the new rules, online applications will cost $550 and paper applications will cost $560.

Form I-129F application for alien fiancée has decreased in cost from $535 to $510.

Adjustment of Status

The current $1225 adjustment of status fees includes the adjustment application as well as the application fees for the employment authorization document and advance parole. It also covers the renewal fees for the cards if the application is still pending.

The new fee eliminates the combined fee and requires separate fees for new and renewed EAD and AP cards. The cost to file an adjustment application with both cards will increase to $2,270, and applicants will be required to pay fees of $550 and $590, respectively, for each EAD and AP renewal.

Asylum Applications

Asylum applications have always been free. Given the nature of asylum applications, USCIS has never charged a fee for the asylum application nor the initial work permit document.

DHS will now require applicants for asylum or withholding of removal to pay a $50 fee to have their requests processed, to be refunded to successful asylum applicants when they apply for permanent residence. Applicants must also pay a $30 biometrics fee and a $550 filing fee when filing an initial or extension I-765 EAD application. For more information, please click here.

Work Authorization and Travel Permits

Work Authorization fees for all applications except for DACA EAD’s have increased from $410 to $550. DACA EAD have remained $410.

Travel permits have increased from $575 to $590.

Premium Processing Time Increase

Premium processing costs $1410 and guarantees that USCIS will take adjudicative action on the application within 15 days. If USCIS fails to do so, the agency will return the fee but still expedite the application. Premium processing also guarantees that any RFE or NOID responses will also be adjudicated within 15 days.

The new rules will change the 15 calendar days to 15 business days. The fee does not change. Please click here to learn more about premium processing.

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