Sunday, May 30, 2010

Increase of Non-Immigrant Visa Application Fees Effective June 4, 2010

 Important Notice - New Nonimmigrant Application Fees: The Nonimmigrant visa application processing fees will increase on June 4, 2010 and will be tiered, as shown below. (There will no longer be one single visa application fee for all nonimmigrant categories.) See the Press Release.  Applicants will have to pay the full fee in effect on the day they apply, regardless of when they pay. (Review additional information, including a cost of service study on the www.Regulations.gov website.)

Description of Service and Fee Amount
Nonimmigrant visa application and border crossing card processing fees (per person):
  • Nonimmigrant visa application processing fee (non-refundable), DS-160 or Form DS-156 for all categories below:
    • Non-petition-based nonimmigrant visa (except E): $140.00
    • H, L, O, P, Q and R category visa: $150.00
    • E category visa: $390.00
    • K category visa: $350.00
  • Border crossing card fees:
    • Border crossing card - age 15 and over (Valid 10 years): $140.00
    • 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): $14.00
Other Fees
  • L visa fraud prevention and detection fee - for visa applicant included in L blanket petition  (principal applicant only): $500.00
When the nonimmigrant visa application processing fee is not required:
  • Applicants for A, G, C-3, NATO and diplomatic visas (defined in 22 CFR 41.26): No Fee
  • An applicant for a J visa participating in official Department of State or USAID sponsored educational and cultural exchanges, under a G-1, G-2, G-3 or G-7 program number, as well as the applicant’s dependent spouse and children: No Fee
  • Replacement of machine-readable visa when the original visa was not properly affixed or needs to be reissued through no fault of the applicant: No Fee
  • Applicants exempted by international agreement as determined by Visa Services, including members and staff of an observer mission to United Nations Headquarters recognized by the UN General Assembly, and their immediate families: No Fee
  • Applicants travelling to provide charitable services as determined by Visa Services: No Fee
  • U.S. Government employees travelling on official business: No Fee
  • A parent, sibling, spouse or child of a U.S. Government employee killed in the line of duty who is traveling to attend the employee’s funeral and/or burial; or a parent, sibling, spouse, son or daughter of a U.S. Government employee critically injured in the line of duty for visitation during emergency treatment and convalescence: No Fee
Nonimmigrant visa issuance fee, including border-crossing cards.
When the nonimmigrant visa issuance fee is not required:
  • An official representative of a foreign government or an international or regional organization of which the U.S. is a member; members and staff of an observer mission to United Nations Headquarters recognized by the UN General Assembly; and applicants for diplomatic visas as defined under item 22(a); and their immediate families: No Fee
  • An applicant transiting to and from the United Nations Headquarters: No Fee
  • An applicant participating in a U.S. Government sponsored program which may include applicant’s dependent spouse and children: No Fee
  • An applicant travelling to provide charitable services as determined by Visa Services: No Fee
Other - When a Visa is Not Required - Visa Waiver Program
  • Citizens of Visa Waiver Program participating countries, and meeting requirements pay a small fee. Select  USCIS fees  to learn more.
Coming to the U.S. Permanently - Immigrant Services
Description of Service and Fee Amount
  • Filing an immigrant visa petition (Collected for USCIS and subject to change)
    • Petition to classify status of alien relative for issuance of immigrant visa, select USCIS, Form I-130 for fees and form.
    • Petition to classify orphan as an immediate relative, select USCIS, Form I-600 for fees and form.
    • Petition to classify Convention Adoptee as an immediate relative, select USCIS, Form I-800 for fees and form.
    • Immigrant visa application processing fee (non-refundable, per person), Form DS-230: $355.00
  • Diversity Visa Lottery surcharge for immigrant visa application (non-refundable, per person applying as a result of the lottery program): $375.00
  • Immigrant visa security surcharge, for all IV and DV applicants: $45.00
  • Affidavit of Support Review (only when AOS is reviewed domestically), Form I-864: $70.00
Note: Forms and fee amounts are listed for immigration petitions which are submitted to Department of State, either accepted at an Embassy or Consulate abroad, or within the U.S to the National Visa Center or Kentucky Consular Center. Other immigration related forms can only be approved by the Department of Homeland Security's United States Citizenship and Immigrants Services (USCIS).  For other fees (relating to forms starting with an “I” select  USCIS Forms and Fees  for additional information.

Special Visa Services
Description of Service and Fee Amount
  • Application for Determining Returning Resident Status, Form DSP-117 : $400.00
  • Transportation letter for Legal Permanent Residents of U.S.: $165.00
  • Application for Waiver of 2 year foreign residency requirement (J Waiver),
    Data Sheet, Form 3035 : $215.00
  • Application for Waiver of immigrant visa ineligibility (collected for USCIS), Form I-601 : $545.00
  • Refugee or significant public benefit parole case processing: No Fee
( NOTE: This fee chart is based on the Code of Federal Regulations - Title 22, Part 22, Sections 22.1 through 22.7.)

 ____________________

Effective June 4, 2010, the US Department of State is increasing its non-immigrant (temporary) visa processing fees at all US embassies and consular posts and moving to a tiered schedule of fees.  The new schedule is as follows:

Nonimmigrant visa and border crossing card application processing fees (per person):

(a) Non-petition-based non-immigrant visa (except E category):  $140

These include include B1/B2 tourist and business visitor visas and all student and exchange visitor (F, M and J) visas

(b) H, L, O, P, Q and R category non-immigrant visa:  $150

- H visa - temporary workers and trainees

· L visa - intracompany transferees

· O visa - aliens with extraordinary ability

· P visa - athletes, artists and entertainers

· Q visa - international cultural exchange visitors

· R visa - religious occupations

(c) E category nonimmigrant visa:   $390

      E covers Treaty Traders and Treaty Investors.

(d) K category nonimmigrant visa:  $350

     The K category includes fiance visas and those for foreign nationals married to US citizens who are waiting for approval of a Form I-130.

(e) Border crossing card--age 15 and over (valid 10 years) :$140

(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):  $14

By law, the fees may only be set at cost. The Department of State therefore commissioned an independent study conducted from August 2007 through June 2009 to determine their actual processing costs. Average cost numbers were then rounded up to the nearest ten for easy of foreign currency conversion. The additional revenue resulting from this rounding will be used for GSS services.

The implementing legislation's list of reasons why some “petition based” visa types are more expensive (H, L, O, P, Q, and R) gives a brief insight into the processing activities conducted at the consulates for them:
  • review of extensive documentation
  • a more in-depth interview of the applicant
  • receiving petition information from DHS,
  • conducting reviews of government and commercial databases to confirm the existence of the petitioning business, and
  • entering that data into the Petition Information Management Service (PIMS) database.
Visa reciprocity fees vary from country to country and still apply, so consult with your local post, consulate or embassy to find the exact visa application fees applicable in your case.

Fee changes are only in effect for non-immigrant visas applied for at consular posts (consulates and embassies).  Fee changes are under review for other consular services like US passports, immigrant visas.  Department of State, May 24, 2010 press release, Nonimmigrant Visa Application Fees to Increase June 4, http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2010/05/142155.htm.

These new fees were set forth in the Federal Register: May 20, 2010 (Volume 75, Number 97),Rules and Regulations, pages 28188-28194. From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov][DOCID:fr20my10-3] DEPARTMENT OF STATE, 22 CFR Part 22, Public Notice: 7018, RIN 1400-AC57. Title: Schedule of Fees for Consular Services, Department of State and Overseas Embassies and Consulates.

Nonimmigrant Visa Application Fees to Increase June 4


On May 20, 2010, the Department of State published an interim final rule in the Federal Register to increase nonimmigrant visa application processing fees, also called the Machine-Readable Visa (MRV) fee, and Border Crossing Card (BCC) fees. The interim final rule also establishes a tiered structure with separate fees for different nonimmigrant visa categories. The new fees are scheduled to go into effect on June 4, 2010.
The Department is increasing fees to ensure sufficient resources to cover the rising cost of processing nonimmigrant visas. This increase applies both to nonimmigrant visas placed in passports and to border crossing cards issued to certain applicants in Mexico.
The new, tiered fee structure was created to cover the higher unit costs for processing certain categories of nonimmigrant visas that are more complicated and require more in-depth consideration than most other categories of nonimmigrant visas. The Department is required to recover, as far as possible, the cost of processing nonimmigrant visas through the collection of the application fees. For a number of reasons, including new security enhancements, the $131 fee set on January 1, 2008 no longer covers the current, actual cost of processing nonimmigrant visas.
Under the new schedule of fees, applicants for all visas that are not petition-based, including B1/B2 tourist and business visitor visas and all student and exchange visitor (F, M and J) visas, will pay a fee of $140.
Applicants for petition-based visas will pay an application fee of $150. These categories include:
· H visa for temporary workers and trainees
· L visa for intracompany transferees
· O visa for aliens with extraordinary ability
· P visa for athletes, artists and entertainers
· Q visa for international cultural exchange visitors
· R visa for religious occupations
The application fee for K visas for fiancé(e)s of U.S. citizens will be $350. The fee for E visas for treaty-traders and treaty-investors will be $390.
Concurrent with the publication of the interim final rule, the Department will also release additional cost of service data and re-open the public comment period for an additional 60 days. At the conclusion of that period, the Department will consider public comments and publish a final rule. To view the interim final rule, please go to 75 Federal Register 28194. Comments may be submitted via www.regulations.gov.
This fee increase information may also be found on the Department of State, Travel.state.gov internet site, on the Fees for Visa Services webpage, and also on U.S. Embassy and Consulate websites abroad. Only the fees for nonimmigrant visas will change on June 4. Proposed fee changes related to U.S. passports, immigrant visas, and other consular services are still under review.


PRN: 2010/669

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