Today, USCIS announced a final draft for a rule change proposal that will not only affect key application forms, but also significantly increase processing fees.

We are still wrapping our heads around this 576-page proposal, but so far, these are the main changes:

  • Increase in fees by a weighted average of 20%

  • Adds a $50 fee for asylum applications

  • Removes the proposal to transfer money to ICE

  • Establishes multiple fees for nonimmigrant worker petitions

  • Limits the number of beneficiaries for certain forms

As Chair of AILA’s Media & Advocacy Committee, Fiona is working closely with other immigration experts monitoring this report, including AILA Executive Director, Benjamin Johnson, who responded to the fee rule released today:

“Imposing these dramatic increases, especially at a time when the global economy is reeling from the impact of COVID-19 is irrational, harmful and misdirected. The fee increases will impact employers and vulnerable individuals, including asylees for the first time, and those seeking to take the final steps in becoming citizens, thus further hampering the energy, innovation, and drive of immigrants, assets the U.S. needs now more than ever. And at the same time USCIS is seeking a billion dollar bailout from Congress, it has capriciously planned to pass off its inefficiencies to the public by adding an additional 10 percent surcharge on these increased fees that will further hobble our economy and harm our shared prosperity.”

The rule will be published in the Federal Register on August 3rd, 2020, and will be effective 60 days later on October 2nd. During this public comment period, the general public will have the opportunity to submit their comments and opinions on this rule change proposal. We encourage everyone to speak up for the immigrant community. Stay connected with us for more on this, and for the latest on AILA’s Featured Issue Page, visit: https://www.aila.org/uscisfees