Every two years, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services evaluates its fee schedule to determine if the rates are high enough to cover operating costs, which include such things as fraud detection, national security, customer service and case processing. The government agency is almost entirely funded by fees paid by applicants and petitioners.
As a result of the most recent evaluation, USCIS announced that most application filing fees will increase 21%.
“This is our first fee increase since November 2010, and we sincerely appreciate the valuable public input we received as we prepared this final rule,” said USCIS Director León Rodríguez. “We are mindful of the effect fee increases have on many of the customers we serve. That’s why we decided against raising fees as recommended after the fiscal year 2012 and 2014 fee reviews. However, as an agency dependent upon users’ fees to operate, these changes are now necessary to ensure we can continue to serve our customers effectively.”
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Some common cases affected are:
- H-1B and non-blanket L-1 filing fees increasing by $135 per petition filed.
- H-4, L-2, and other dependent cases filed inside the U.S. increasing by $80 per application filed.
- I-140 filing fees increasing by $120.
- I-485 filing fees increasing by $155.