EB-5 Visa Filing Fee Increase Postponed by USCIS to 2024

Los Angeles, CA, July 13, 2023

The proposed EB-5 filing fee increase for 2023 was postponed by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to 2024 after the initial fee schedule was met with criticisms from industry stakeholders. The EB5 Visa filing fee increase was set to raise the costs of Form I-526/I-526E by 204% and Form I-829 by 148%. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) regularly reviews its fee schedule, especially since the agency relies mostly on filing fees to sustain its operational costs. USCIS aims to meet its operational costs, speed up case processing, and maintain its humanitarian programs through filing fee increases. 

Similar to the previously proposed filing fee hike, the proposal would be open for public comment before being implemented in 2024. We’ve already helped two of our investors achieve I-526E approvals in less than a year. We can help you get a U.S. Green Card through investment through our personalized approach and collaboration with EB 5 industry experts. Continue reading to learn why now is the best time to invest in an EB-5 Immigrant Visa before the USCIS filing fee increase in 2024. 

Why Did USCIS Postpone the EB-5 Visa Filing Fee Increase for 2023?

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) proposal to increase EB-5 Visa filing fees for 2023 was met with criticism from industry stakeholders. The proposal to increase EB-5 Visa filing fees was initially released on January 3, 2023 and was open for public comment for 60 days. Both the American Immigration Council and the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) criticized the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) for being unable to deliver on their promises to stakeholders and the continued lengthy processing times for their services. 

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Why Did USCIS Propose an Increase for EB-5 Visa Filing Fees for 2023?

The proposed USCIS EB 5 Visa filing fee increase aims to enable the agency to meet its operational costs, speed up case processing, and maintain its humanitarian programs. USCIS relies heavily on filing fees to sustain its operations and services. The agency regularly reviews and updates its fees, however, the last adjustment on USCIS fees was back in 2016. 

USCIS completed an updated filing fee schedule in 2020 after their fiscal year 2019-2020 review which was set to raise the fees by 20% which was a little less than the average weighted increase (21%) imposed by the 2016 rule published by the Obama administration. The USCIS fee hike was supposed to take effect on October 2, 2020, however, it was blocked by a federal district court and was never put into law by the administrations of Trump or Biden. 

The 2023 USCIS fee schedule from the Biden administration is meant to completely replace the 2020 fee rule, even though the proposal keeps many of the amendments made in the 2020 fee schedule. The proposed 2023 USCIS fee hike entails a weighted average increase of 40% above the existing filing costs, though the rate of increase differed considerably across different immigrant categories. While some of the most pronounced filing fee increases would occur for petitions based on employment-based immigration such as the EB5 Investor Visa, fees for a number of humanitarian programs would either stay the same or decrease.

What Was the Proposed EB-5 Visa Filing Fee Increase for 2023?

The 2023 USCIS filing fee increase for EB5 Visa applications sought to raise Form I-526 & Form I-526E costs (Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur/Regional Center Investor) from $3,675 to $11,160 (204% increase). The cost of Form I-829 (Petition by Investor to Remove Conditions on Permanent Resident Status) would increase from $3,835 to $9,525 for the majority of applicants (148% increase for those who need biometrics). The I-526/I-526E petition is used to initiate the EB5 Visa process while the I-829 petition is filed before the 2-year Conditional Permanent Residency period ends. The new regional center forms implemented under the 2022 Reform and Integrity Act (RIA) are also included in the proposed USCIS EB5 Filing Fee Increase 2023.

When Will the Proposed EB-5 Visa Filing Fee Increase Take Effect?

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has postponed the USCIS fee hike for EB 5 to early 2024. As with the majority of regulations, the new USCIS fee schedule would first be published as a proposal, with a 30 to 60-day window for public comment. Such regulations could only be put into effect after the Administration has given serious attention to the feedback received after releasing the proposal and the regulations have passed a final review by the Office of Management and Budget. The typical rulemaking process takes at least a few months and in some instances, the implementation of interim and temporary final rules may be accelerated.

We’ll Help You Start Start Your EB-5 Visa Application Today 

Our personalized approach has already helped two of our investors gain I-526E approval in just under a year. We work with immigration attorneys, regional centers, and tax professionals to help you go through the EB 5 Visa application process smoothly. Our CEO and Founder, Vivek Tandon, Esq. is a licensed U.S. attorney and investment banker who educates immigrant investors about the EB-5 Program. Meet with Vivek at our EB5 Events and learn how you can get a Green Card through EB5 investment.