This report covers the USCIS’ resumption of Premium Processing for H-1B petitions which can help employers that have foreign workers with urgent international travel or work authorization needs.
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (“USCIS”) has announced that Premium Processing is once again available for all H-1B petitions as of Tuesday, October 3, 2017.1
Previously, USCIS had suspended Premium Processing for all H-1B petitions as of April 3, 2017.2 Premium Processing provides expedited processing for petitions within 15 days for an additional fee.
For employers with qualifying employees where it may be appropriate to premium process an H-1B petition (i.e., urgent international travel, to avoid lapses in work authorization, etc.), this means that all H-1B petitions either filed on and after October 3 or now pending with USCIS can utilize Premium Processing service by means of filing a Form I-907 and paying the filing fee of $1,225.
Petitioners or Beneficiaries are eligible to pay for this expedited service. Beneficiaries who have upcoming foreign travel, and who will require a new visa stamp prior to re-entry to the U.S. may be good candidates for this service.
Premium Processing may still result in a Request for Additional Evidence (“RFE”). However, the petition should be approved, denied, or a RFE will be issued within the 15-day Premium Processing period. If an RFE is issued, the final adjudication will occur within 15 days of receipt of the RFE response by USCIS. If USCIS misses the deadlines, the Premium Processing filing fee will be refunded.
USCIS had suspended Premium Processing Service on April 3, 2017, to work on the regular processing backlog.
Over the summer, KPMG Law LLP has seen faster processing times for H-1B petitions submitted under regular processing. Slowly, USCIS has resumed Premium Processing for various types of H-1B petitions, with the most recent announcement indicating that all types of H-1B petitions are now eligible for Premium Processing service, effective immediately.
Please note that KPMG LLP (U.S.) does not provide any immigration services. However, KPMG Law LLP in Canada can assist clients with U.S. immigration matters.
The information contained in this newsletter was submitted by the KPMG International member firm in Canada.
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