A proposed rule to increase U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) fees has been sent to the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB).

Key Points:

  • OMB review is the last step in the rulemaking process before the proposed rule is published. The text of the proposal is not yet available.
  • The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) indicated in its regulatory agenda that it is targeting September 2022 to publish the proposed rule and that it would “establish new USCIS fees to recover USCIS operating costs.”
  • Once published, the proposed fee increases will be subject to a notice-and-comment period. USCIS will be required to review all of the comments it receives before finalizing a new fee schedule.

Additional Information: In 2020, DHS published a regulation to increase filing fees, but a court blocked the fees from taking effect. The proposal under OMB review would rescind and replace the 2020 rule. USCIS funding challenges and related staffing issues have contributed to delays across visa categories, and USCIS officials have said they are prioritizing backlog reduction.

This alert has been provided by the BAL U.S. Practice group. For additional information, please contact berryapplemanleiden@bal.com.

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