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USCIS Ends Biometric Services Fee Requirement


Biometric Services

Fee Requirement

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently announced that it is ending the $85 biometric services requirement and fee for Form I-539 for applications filed on or after October 1, 2023. This form is used to apply for an extension or change to nonimmigrant status, including B-1, B-2, F-1, F-2, H-4, L-2, O-3, and TD statuses.

The biometrics fee has been used to fund the process of fingerprinting and photographing applicants to check government databases for serious criminal records or previous violations of immigration laws. USCIS had previously suspended some biometrics fees and appointments in May 2021.

This new announcement applies to all I-539 applicants and makes the change permanent, although the agency may still schedule a biometrics appointment at its discretion. The decision will hopefully speed up the process of granting approvals for certain immigration categories, as well as corresponding work authorization for those who are eligible.

Note that individuals filing Form I-539 applications before September 30, 2023, may still be scheduled for biometrics appointments and should plan to attend them.

For additional questions on how this may impact you or foreign national employees and their families, please reach out to your Meltzer Hellrung attorney.