Get Ready To Shell Out More For U.S. Immigration Services

us-visas-immigrationNews Americas, WASHINGTON, D.C., Mon. Sept. 1, 2014: U.S. visa applicants and immigrants may be forced to soon shell out more for immigration services according to a notice published by the Department of State in the Federal Register.

The amendment to the Schedule of Fees for Consular Services Schedule will temporarily take effect on September 6, 2014 for certain nonimmigrant visa application processing fees, certain immigrant visa application processing and special visa services fees, and certain citizenship services fees.

However, the public can still submit written comments on or before October 21, 2014 before the final rules will be adopted.

More specifically, the rule amends the application processing fees for two categories of petition-based non-immigrant visas and the tiered application processing fees for immigrant visas.

The rule also amends the security surcharge for immigrant visa services and the fees for certain immigrant visa services.

Lastly, the rule raises the application processing fee for renunciation of U.S. citizenship and lowers the hourly consular officer time charge.

The Department of State said it is adjusting the fees in light of the findings of a recent “Cost of Service study to ensure that the fees for consular services better align with the costs of providing those services.”

The following table sets forth the new fees for the following categories listed on the U.S. Department of State’s Schedule of Fees for Consular Services:

Item Fee

PASSPORT AND CITIZENSHIP SERVICES

Administrative Processing of Formal Renunciation of U.S. Citizenship $2,350

NONIMMIGRANT VISA SERVICES

Nonimmigrant Visa Application and Border Crossing Card Processing Fees (per person):
(a) Non-petition-based nonimmigrant visa (except E category) $160
(b) H, L, O, P, Q and R category nonimmigrant visa $190
(c) E category nonimmigrant visa $205
(d) K category (fiancé) nonimmigrant visa $265
(e) Border crossing card—age 15 and over (10 year validity) $160
f) Border crossing card—under age 15; for Mexican citizens if parent or guardian has or is applying for a border crossing card (valid 10 years or until the applicant reaches age 15, whichever is sooner) $16

IMMIGRANT AND SPECIAL VISA SERVICES

32. Immigrant Visa Application Processing Fee (per person)
(a) Immediate relative and family preference applications $325
(b) Employment-based applications $345
(c) Other immigrant visa applications (including I-360 self-petitioners and special immigrant visa applicants) $205
(d) Certain Iraqi and Afghan special immigrant visa applications NO FEE.
34. Affidavit of Support Review (only when reviewed domestically) $120
35. Special Visa Services:
(a) Determining Returning Resident Status $180
(b) Waiver of two year residency requirement $120
(c) Waiver of immigrant visa ineligibility (collected for USCIS and subject to change) For fee amount, see8 CFR 103.7(b)(1).
(d) Refugee or significant public benefit parole case processing NO FEE.
(Items 36 through 40 vacant.)
75. Consular Time Charges: As required by this schedule and for fee services performed away from the office or during after-duty hours (per hour or part thereof/per consular officer) $325

Interested parties may submit comments to the Department by any of the following methods:

  • Visit the Regulations.gov Web site at: https://www.regulations.gov and search the RIN 1400-AD47or docket number DOS-2014-0016.
  • Mail (paper, disk, or CD-ROM): U.S. Department of State, Office of the Comptroller, Bureau of Consular Affairs (CA/C), SA-17 8th Floor, Washington, DC 20522-1707.
  • E-Mail: [email protected]. Include the RIN (1400-AD47) in the subject line of your message.
  • All comments should include the commenter’s name, the organization the commenter represents, if applicable, and the commenter’s address. If the Department is unable to read your comment for any reason, and cannot contact you for clarification, the Department may not be able to consider your comment. After the conclusion of the comment period, the Department will publish a Final Rule (in which it will address relevant comments) as expeditiously as possible.