The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has issued a new fee rule that imposes significant increases, particularly for employment-based petitions. The rule, and the higher fees, will apply to any benefit request postmarked on or after April 1.

Some of the increases, including a new Asylum Program fee, are more than 400 percent higher than the current base fee. The rule also creates separate, significant fees for different non-immigrant categories – H-1B, L-1, and others. The increases are not nearly as significant for I-130 family-based petitions, but the fees for adjusting status to that of a permanent resident (Form I-485) have nearly doubled, and the increases apply to both employees and individuals seeking permanent resident status.

We had previously announced that the fee for all requests for premium processing postmarked February 26 or later, would increase. The new rule extends the time for premium processing from 15 calendar days to 15 business days.

Highlights of the new fee rule

Beginning with next year’s March 2025 lottery, the H-1B cap registration fee will increase from $10 per registration to $215. The increase will not affect submissions in this year’s March 2024 H-1B cap lottery because the lottery takes place before the new rule becomes effective on April 1.

In addition to increasing filing fees based on the type of immigration benefit requested, the new final rule also does the following:

  • Incorporates an "Asylum Program Fee" for most petitioners on filing Forms I-129, Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker, or I-140, Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker. The fee is $300 for small employers (employers with up to 25 employees), and $600 for large employers (employers with more than 25 employees). There is no fee for nonprofit organizations.

  • Reduces by 50 percent the fee for a Form I-765 filed concurrently with, or based on, a pending Form I-485.

  • Provides that submissions for certain immigration benefits, where online filing is permitted, will have different fees for paper versus online filings, the former being $50 higher.

  • Provides that the biometrics fee is no longer an additional charge (currently $85), but generally will be included in the base fee for all cases.

  • Unbundles the I-765 Application for Employment Authorization and the I-131 Application for Travel Document fees from the I-485 Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status fee. Currently, when filed with Form I-140 or Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative, the filing fee for Form I-485, which includes the I-765 and I-131 filing fees, is $1,140 plus an $85 biometrics fee – a total of $1,225 (for applicants age 14 or older). There are no additional fees for the I-765 and I-131 applications.. Under the new rule, the biometrics fee is included in the I-485 fee of $1,440, but the additional fees for the I-765 and I-131 applications bring the total to $2,330.

New fee chart for common employment-based and other petitions and applications:

Immigration Benefit Request

Old Fee

New Fee

I-129 Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker (H-1)



I-129: E, H-3, P, Q, R or TN



I-129L Petition for L Nonimmigrant Worker



I-1290 Petition for O Nonimmigrant Worker



I-140 Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker



1-485 Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status



1-485 Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status (certain applicants under the age of 14)



I-131 Application for Travel Document



Please note the following:

  • The Asylum Program fee must be added to the above fees, and the amount depends on whether the employer is classified as large, small, or nonprofit. Also, for H-1B and L-1 petitions, there have been no changes to the additional fees covered by specific statutes that could apply. These include the H-1B Training fee; for H-1B and L-1 petitions, the Fraud Prevention and Detection fee; and the fees under Public Law 114-113.

  • There are dramatic differences in the new fees for I-129 petition categories– from $780 for an H-1 to $1,385 for an L-1. All the increases are significant.

  • The I-485 fee increase to $1,440 includes the fee for biometrics. The current total is $1,225. However, the I-131 and I-765 filing fees will become extra and bring the total to $2,330 for applicants age 14 or older who are seeking these benefits. The fee for a Form I-765, filed concurrently with or based on a pending Form I-485, is reduced by 50 percent to $260, whether or not filed online.

Also, the USCIS has announced that submissions for certain immigration benefits will have different fees for paper versus online filings, including the following:

Immigration Benefit Request

Old Fee

New Fee (Paper Filing)

New Fee (Online Filing)

I-130 Petition for Alien Relative




1-765 Application for Employment Authorization




1-539 Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status




N-400 Application for Naturalization





The fee rule is complex with many nuances depending on the petition type, the category of the employer, or whether the filing is by paper or online. If you have any questions about the particular fee in your case, a member of the Constangy Immigration Group will be glad to assist.

For a printer-friendly copy, click here.

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