Immigration Updates: Visa Processing, Travel Bans and the New USCIS Fee Schedule

Read on for an overview of updates on immigration and global mobility issues, including those involving visa processing at U.S. embassies and consulates, restrictions on travel and the new U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) fee schedule.

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Employment Immigration: Continued Changes From USCIS and the State Department With COVID-19, Travel Bans and Processing

Business immigration in the United States continues the roller coaster ride of the last six months. With the COVID-19 pandemic, U.S. immigration has been subjected to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) office and consulate closures, travel bans, a three-month suspension of premium processing, and rumors of USCIS furloughs. This short article will address some of the most recent updates.

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New USCIS Filing Fees Go Into Effect October 2, 2020

On August 3, 2020, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) published a final rule updating filing fees for immigration and naturalization applications. The new fees will be required starting October 2, 2020. Especially notable for employment-based applications is that there will be different filing fees for H, L and O petitions, even though they are all filed using Form I-129.

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New Executive Order Temporarily Suspends Entry of Certain Immigrants

On April 22, 2020, President Trump signed an Executive Order (“Proclamation Suspending Entry of Immigrants Who Present Risk to the U.S. Labor Market During the Economic Recovery Following the COVID-19 Outbreak”) temporarily suspending the entry of certain immigrants due to the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Executive Order, effective April 23, 2020, is valid for an initial 60-day period and may be extended or modified within this period.

For the full alert, visit the Faegre Drinker website.

Business Immigration and Coronavirus: Latest Announcements from USCIS and DOL

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the Department of Labor (DOL) sent a flurry of operational updates late last week. These updates include a suspension of premium processing for FY2021 H-1B cap petitions, which was quickly followed by a suspension of premium processing for Form I-129 nonimmigrant visa petitions (H-1B, L-1, TN, O-1 and more work visas) and I-140 immigrant visa petitions. USCIS also sent an announcement relaxing certain “wet” original signatures on forms and an update relaxing some I-9 requirements.

For the full alert, visit the Faegre Drinker website.