Asian Services in Action (ASIA) urges the Biden administration to reject the increase of USCIS fees as suggested in its Proposed Regulation
Akron, OH, March 8, 2023– On January 4, 2023, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) published a rule that proposes to increase the application fees for certain immigration and naturalization application procedures, including family-sponsored and employment-based visas, and other immigration benefits. ASIA strongly urges the Biden administration to reject the proposed regulation, which, if it goes into effect, will disproportionately impact low-income and working communities seeking green cards or family reunions through non-immigrant petitions and employment-related visas.
According to National Partnership of New Americans (NPNA), fees associated with applying for naturalization will increase by an average of 19%. The cost to petition for out-of-country relatives and fiancés will increase by at least 33%, and the cost of applications for employment will increase by 35% to 59%, among other changes. By increasing fees, USCIS will be placing additional barriers for approximately 9.2 million lawful permanent residents, one-third of whom live below the federal poverty level.
The USCIS proposed regulation, published on Jan 4, 2023, will be open for public comment until Monday, March 13th at midnight. ASIA urges individuals and stakeholder organizations to advocate against the proposed rule. Once this period closes on Monday, March 13th at midnight, the federal government has a legal obligation to review and address substantive comments before finalizing the regulation, which can take several additional months. A previous fee-raising regulation by the Trump administration was blocked by a federal court just days before it was set to go into effect, in October 2020 (after being proposed in November 2019).
“Employers across the U.S. are facing labor shortages in almost every industry; an issue solved with more open-door policies for hard-working laborers, including immigrants and refugees,” said Elaine Tso, CEO of ASIA. “The proposed fees would further deter employers from sponsoring individuals from other countries seeking employment in the US, and consumers would feel its effects in the form of higher costs for goods and services.”
Submit a public comment, by Monday, March 13th at midnight, to share the ways that fee increases will impact you, your friends, family, or community.
ASIA is the largest health and human services agency that serves, supports, and advocates for the Asian American/Pacific Islander (AAPI) community of Northeast Ohio. ASIA focuses on providing linguistically and culturally centered services for immigrants and refugees.
MEDIA CONTACT: Anna Chen
PHONE: (216) 410-3889