New fee allows USCIS to recover the costs of processing immigrant visas after individuals
receive their visa packages from the Department of State abroad
WASHINGTON—On Feb. 1, 2013,U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will begin
collecting a new USCIS Immigrant Fee of $165 from foreign nationals seeking permanent residence in
the United States. This new fee was established in USCIS’s final rule adjusting fees for immigration
applications and petitions announced on Sept. 24, 2010.
USCIS has worked closely with the Department of State (DOS) to implement the new fee which allows
USCIS to recover the costs of processing immigrant visas in the United States after immigrant visa
holders receive their visa packages from DOS. This includes staff time to handle, file and maintain the
immigrant visa package, and the cost of producing and delivering the permanent resident card. The
implementation of this new fee is further detailed in a Federal Register notice scheduled for publication
In order to simplify and centralize the payment process, applicants will pay online through the USCIS
website after they receive their visa package from DOS and before they depart for the United States.
DOS will provide applicants with specific information on how to submit payment when they attend their
consular interview. The new fee is in addition to fees charged by DOS associated with an individual’s
immigrant visa application.
USCIS processes approximately 36,000 immigrant visa packages each month. Prospective adoptive
parents whose child will enter the United States under the Orphan or Hague processes are exempt from
the new fee.
For more information visit the USCIS Immigrant Fee webpage.
For general information on USCIS and its programs, please visit www.uscis.gov or follow on Twitter
(@uscis), YouTube (/uscis) and the USCIS blog The Beacon.
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