The Department of Homeland Security has proposed a rule that would significantly increase government immigration-related application fees for international students, exchange visitors and sponsoring schools.

Summary of proposed fee changes:

  • The Student and Exchange Visitor Program school certification petition fee for initial certification would increase to $3,000 from the current $1,700.
  • Schools filing a petition for recertification would be required to pay a new fee of $1,250.
  • The I-901 SEVIS fee—required before applying for a visa—would increase to $350 (from the current $200) for F and M international students and to $220 for most J exchange visitors (from the current $180). The $35 fee for summer work and travel, au pair and camp counselor will not change.
  • Schools filing an administrative appeal of a USCIS decision would be required to pay a new fee of $675.
  • Schools reporting changes to their physical location or adding a new physical location (on Form I-17) would be required to pay a new fee of $655. The DHS school site visit fee of $655 would remain the same.

BAL Analysis: Schools and international students should budget for the fee increases. The proposed rule has been published in the Federal Register, and DHS will be accepting public comments until Sept. 17. Schools and individuals are encouraged to participate in the comment period and may contact their BAL attorney for additional information on submitting comments.

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

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