H1B Visas – Public Law 111-230 Filing Fee for certain H and L visas

Here is a quick update from the California Service Center regarding this new fee. The additional filing fees of $2,000 for certain H-1B petitions and $2,250 for certain L- 1A and L-1B petitions is applicable to petitioning employers who employ 50 or more employees in the United States and 50% of the petitioner’s employees are in H-1B, L-1A or L-1B status. The PL 111-230 fees do not apply to petitions requesting an extension of H-1B, L-1A or L-1B status with the same employer (only for initial filings for a new beneficiary).

When the fee is not required, it is critical that the petitioner explicitly acknowledge this and explain why it is not required in the I-129 filing. If this is not done, USCIS will likely issue a Request for Evidence asking for a statement from the petitioner, causing unnecessary delays in processing.

The Service Center previously stated:

Until the Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker (Form I-129) and the Nonimmigrant Petition Based on Blanket L Petition (Form I-129S) are revised, USCIS recommends that all H-1B, L-1A, and L-1B petitioners include, as part of the filing packet, the new fee or a statement or other evidence outlining why this new fee does not apply. USCIS requests that petitioners include a notation indicating whether or not the fee is required in bold capital letters at the top of the cover letter. The fee, statement, notation, or other evidence should be provided with each petition submitted. Where the fee or documentation is not submitted with the filing, or where questions remain, USCIS may issue a Request for Evidence to determine whether the additional fee applies to the petition.

The following is a sample statement that the petitioner employer could use:
By this statement we confirm that our company (the petitioner) is not required to pay the H-1B filing fee under Public Law 111-230. Our business does not have more than 50 percent of our employees in the United States in H-1B or L-1 nonimmigrant visa status. Therefore, we are not required to pay the additional filing fee.

Please email me with any questions regarding the above referenced info.