BREAKING NEWS: USCIS Expands Premium Processing for Certain F-1 Students Seeking OPT or STEM OPT


The moment we have been waiting for has finally arrived.

Yesterday, March 6, 2023, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced the expansion of premium processing services for certain F-1 students seeking Optional Practical Training (OPT) and F-1 students seeking science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) OPT extensions who have a pending Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization, and wish to request a premium processing upgrade.

As of yesterday, March 6th USCIS has made possible the online filing of Form I-907, Request for Premium Processing Service, for F-1 students in these categories. USCIS will also accept the latest edition of the Form I-907 by mail.

In support of this move, USCIS Director Ur M. Jaddou said, “The availability of premium processing for certain F-1 students, in addition to the ease of online filing, will streamline the immigration experience for a great many international students.”

Regarding the decision to make online filing of Form I-907 available, he stated, “The ongoing expansion of online filing is a priority for USCIS as we continue to create operational efficiencies and increase access to the immigration system for stakeholders, applicants, petitioners, requestors, and those we serve.”

How will this be implemented?

The expansion of premium processing for certain F-1 students will occur in phases. Students requesting premium processing should not file before these dates:

  • Beginning Monday March 6, 2023, USCIS will accept Form I-907 requests, filed either via paper form or online, for certain F-1 students who already have a pending Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization, if they are filing under one of the following categories:
    • (c)(3)(A) – Pre-Completion OPT;
    • (c)(3)(B) – Post-Completion OPT; and
    • (c)(3)(C) – 24-Month Extension of OPT for STEM students.
  • Beginning April 3, 2023, USCIS will accept Form I-907 requests, filed either via paper form or online, for F-1 students in the above categories when filed together with Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization

USCIS warns applicants to abide by these dates, as the agency will reject premium processing requests for a pending Form I-765 if received before March 6, and will reject any premium processing request for an initial or concurrently filed Form I-765 that is received before April 3.

Online Filing of Form I-907 Request for Premium Processing for Pending EAD applications

To file Form I-907 online, an applicant must first create a USCIS online account. There, applicants can submit the form, pay fees, and track the status of pending applications.

Applicants who previously filed a paper Form I-765 and wish to file Form I-907 online to request premium processing should reference the USCIS Account Access Notice they received for the Online Access Code and details on how to link their paper-filed cases to their online account, or they will not be able to file Form I-907 online and will need file a paper Form I-907 with the Chicago lockbox.

A USCIS Account Access notice is a document issued by USCIS informing applicants that USCIS has created an online account for you, which you can activate on the USCIS website. You may have received this notice if you applied for a work permit. You can use the Online Access Code provided on the notice to create your account.

Click here for the direct filing address for Filing Form I-907, Request for Premium Processing, to Upgrade a Pending OPT- related Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization.

Contact Us. If you would like to schedule a consultation, please text 619-569-1768 or call 619-819-9204.

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