The USCIS has resumed Premium Processing for all H-1B petitions. It will facilitate a speedy process for adjudicating all non-immigrant applications. This includes H-1B, R, E, O2, O1, L1 and other US Visas.
The fee for premium processing is additional 1410 USD. USCIS will give a decision or issue RFE – Request for Evidence within 15 days of receiving the petition. If it is unable to comply with the timeline of 15 days, the fees for premium processing are refunded.
The petition that receives an RFE must include the fee and request for premium processing. Then along with the RFE response, it must be sent to the exact Service Centre. This is to which it might have been transferred or be pending.
The resumption of Premium Processing includes all H-1B petitions that are subject to the cap for this season. This commences on 29 March and will run through April first week this year.
USCIS had suspended premium processing for cap-subject H-1B petitions in the past few years.
The resumption of premium processing for all categories of H-1B applications has offered huge relief to the business community in the US. The transfer of workers in specialty occupation amongst employers will be eased. The speedy adjudication will make the burdened Visa process little more unsurprising and make the time frames more manageable.
Meanwhile, the USCIS has also announced the closing of its overseas offices. This will impact both US nationals and their families abroad and others interested to immigrate to the US. It is because the locally accessible contact will be removed. This has been accessible to immigrants, refugees, and others, as quoted by the JDSUPRA.
It must be seen how the US administration will balance the absence of its overseas services. For example, it must be watched if the Department of State will step in to cater to the void left by the USCIS.
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