If you recently filed, attempted to file, or were preparing to file Form I-129 (Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker) or Form I-140 (Immigrant Petition for Alien Workers) using premium processing, you were likely affected by the temporary suspensions of expedited services by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) on March 22, 2020 due to the novel coronavirus (COVID19).
However, The USCIS has recently announced that, throughout the month of June, 2020, premium processing will resume for both Form I-129 and Form I-140.
The return of premium processing should aid employers and foreign nationals, many of whom have waited months for decisions relating to their applications. It should also extend much-needed support to the agency itself, which has seen a dramatic shortfall in revenue as a result of declining applications attributed to this suspension, consequences relating to COVID19, and stricter federal immigration laws. It currently costs $1,440 to use the agency’s premium processing service.
The resumption of these expedited services will occur in the following phases:
Effective June 1, 2020, USCIS will accept Form I-907, Request for Premium Processing Service for all eligible Form I-140 petitions.
Effective June 8, USCIS will accept premium processing requests for:
- H-1B petitions filed before June 8 that are pending adjudication and are cap-exempt (for example, petitions filed by petitioners that are cap-exempt and petitions filed for beneficiaries previously counted toward the numerical allocations).
- All other Form I-129 petitions (non H-1B petitions) for nonimmigrant classifications eligible for premium processing filed before June 8 that are pending adjudication.
Effective June 15, USCIS plans on resuming premium processing for:
- H-1B petitions requesting premium processing by filing an I-907 concurrently with their I-129 (or request for a petition filed on or after June 8) and are exempt from the cap because:
- The employer is cap-exempt or because the beneficiary will be employed at a qualifying cap-exempt institution, entity or organization (such as an institution of higher education, a nonprofit research organization or a governmental research organization); or
- The beneficiary is cap-exempt based on a Conrad/IGA waiver under INA section 214(l).
Effective June 22, USCIS plans on resuming premium processing for all other Form I-129 petitions, including:
- All H-1B cap-subject petitions (including those for fiscal year 2021), including change of status from F-1 nonimmigrant status, for both premium processing upgrades and concurrently filed I-907s.
- All other Form I-129 petitions for nonimmigrant classifications eligible for premium processing and requesting premium processing by filing an I-907 concurrently with their I-129.
This schedule and the availability of service is subject to change at any time based on the USCIS’s application volume.
Let Our Legal Team Help You
Filing a Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker or Immigrant Petition for Alien Workers can be complicated and frustrating under normal circumstances. The process can be even more strenuous with these coronavirus-related suspensions and resumptions, but the Verma Law Firm is here to help. In addition to our commitment to protecting the rights of immigration nationwide, our lawyers can bring your case over 20 years of business and family immigration experience.
If you need help navigating changing immigration law, give our office a call at (408) 560-4622 or contact us online today.