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USCIS Implements Increased Premium Processing Fee

Books and HammerOn October 1, the Continuing Appropriations Act, 2021 and Other Extensions Act was signed into law. This required the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to increase fees for premium processing, a service that provides expedited processing for Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker, and Form I-140, Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker. Applicants are required to pay a service fee in order to receive premium processing. This guarantees processing in 15 calendar days or the applicant will be refunded the fee.

Part of the Act included the Emergency Stopgap USCIS Stabilization Act. This required USCIS to establish and collect additional premium processing fees with the intention of using the additional funds for expanded purposes. While Form I-907 was previously $1440, it is now $2500. This is for all except petitioners filing Form I-129, requesting H-2B or R-1 nonimmigrant status. The premium processing fee for individuals in these circumstances increased from $1440 to $1500. These fees became effective on October 19, 2020.

All petitioners should be aware that any Form I-907 that is postmarked on or after October 19 must include the new fee amount. If USCIS receives a Form I-907 that is postmarked on or after this date with an incorrect filing fee, the form will be rejected and the petitioner will be returned their fee. If the filing was sent commercially (UPS, FedEx, DHL), the postmark date is the date reflected on the receipt.

Pub. L. No. 116-159 also provides USCIS with the right to expand premium processing to additional forms and benefit requests. While this is true, USCIS is not taking action on this yet. If an expansion of this system to other forms occurs, it will be implemented as stated in the legislation.

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