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Immigration fees can vary depending on the type of immigration benefit an individual is seeking and the country in which they are applying. Some common immigration fees include fees for applying for a visa, obtaining permanent residence (also known as a "green card"), and naturalizing as a citizen. These fees can range from a few hundred to several thousand dollars. Paying these fees can be a challenge for some families, especially those who are low-income or have experienced financial hardship. However, for many people, the opportunity to live and work in a new country, and to potentially provide their children with a better future, is worth the cost. It's important to note that there are often fee waivers available for those who cannot afford to pay the full amount. Additionally, some organizations and charities may offer assistance with immigration fees to those in need.
January 5, 2023
USCIS is proposing increasing most immigration filing fees

USCIS made a historical proposal for most USCIS fees to increase to cover their budget gap.

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has proposed significant increases to most of its fees in order to cover its budget gap.

The filing fee for the I-130 petition, which is used to sponsor a relative for a green card, has been increased from $535 to $720 for online filings and to $820 for paper form submissions. This is the first time that USCIS has separated fees based on the method of filing.

The green card package with work authorization and advance parole (I-485, I-765, and I-131) has seen a 130% increase, going from $1,225 to $2,820. The application fee for US citizenship (N-400) has also been increased by 5%, from $725 to $760. The fees for I-129 petitions, which are used to sponsor nonimmigrant workers, have also been increased by varying amounts depending on the employment visa type. For example, the fee for H-1B visas has increased from $460 to $780, while the fee for L visas (intra-company manager transferees) has gone up from $460 to $1,385.

A new “asylum program fee” has also been introduced for H-1B visa applicants, requiring work visa employers to pay for the costs of asylum backlogs. The fees for investor green cards have doubled or tripled, with the largest percentage increase seen in the Immigrant Petition by Regional Center Investment Form I-526E, which has gone up 204% from $3,675 to $11,160. The only notable decrease was a $75 decrease in the fee for the I-90 application to extend or replace a permanent green card, which has gone from $540 to $465.

USCIS is required to review its immigration fee structure every two years, and the proposed fee hikes are expected as the agency is facing staffing challenges and a growing application backlog. The agency relies on filing fees for roughly 96% of its funding, and has not introduced new fees since 2016. According to USCIS Director Ur M. Jaddou, the new fee structure will allow the agency to “improve customer service operations and manage the incoming workload.” If you have been affected by these fee increases and need assistance, you can contact a team of attorneys at 718-769-6352 or (718)679-3131 on WhatsApp for help.

Here are where all the fees are listed with old and proposed NEW numbers and percentages.

The proposed fee hikes are expected since the agency is required to review its immigration fee structure every two years. USCIS receives roughly 96% of its funding from filing fees, and hasn’t introduced new fees since 2016. The cash-strapped agency is facing staffing challenges and an ever-increasing application backlog.

USCIS Director Ur M. Jaddou said that the new fee structure would allow the agency to “improve customer service operations and manage the incoming workload.”

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