New USCIS Fees Will Take Effect on November 23, 2010

Employers will see higher charges for most employment-based immigration petitions and applications and for premium processing services when a new U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services fee schedule takes effect on November 23, 2010.

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will increase the fees for many immigration filings, including premium processing cases, and will introduce new fees for applications and services that were previously processed without charge, according to a final regulation that is set to be published in Friday’s Federal Register. The new fee schedule will take effect 60 days after publication, on November 23, 2010. Petitions and applications postmarked on or after November 23 must include the new fees.

According to USCIS, the agency is altering its fee schedule to reflect the full cost of processing applications and petitions. New Fees for Employment-Based Filings:
Employers will see higher fees for most employment-based filings, though some fees will be lowered. Among the new fees are the following:
Form Type Current Fee (CF) New Fee (NF)

Form I-129 Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker $320 (CF) $325 (NF)
Form I-140 Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker $475 (CF) $580 (NF)
Form I-485 Application to Adjust Status $930 (CF) $985 (NF)
Form I-765 Application for Employment Authorization $340 (CF) $380 (NF)
Form I-131 Application for Travel Document $305 (CF) $360 (NF)
Form I-539 Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status $300 (CF) $290 (NF)
Premium Processing Fee Increase:

USCIS will increase the fee for premium processing services from $1,000 to $1,225 for eligible Form I-129 and Form I-140 petitions. Despite the urging of business immigration advocates, the agency elected not to expand premium processing to other case types, but indicated that it would consider an expansion of the service in the future.

New Fees for Immigrant Visa Services and ProgramsL

Two new fees will be introduced in connection with immigrant visa programs. Foreign nationals applying for an immigrant visa will be required to pay a new USCIS domestic processing fee of $165, in addition to the State Department’s existing immigrant visa processing fees. The new fee is expected to be collected by the State Department on behalf of USCIS, but exact details on how applicants will pay it have not yet been released.

Entities that are seeking to participate as regional centers in the Immigrant Investor Pilot Program of the employment-based fifth preference (EB-5) immigrant category will pay an application fee of $6,230.