Premium Processing Expansion for EB-1C and NIW Petitions and Certain F-1 Students
USCIS has announced the final phase of its premium processing expansion for I-140 petitions in the EB-1C (multinational executives/managers) and EB-2 National Interest Waiver categories. Beginning January 30, 2023, all already-pending I-140 petitions filed in these categories can be upgraded to premium processing. In addition, the premium processing request may also be submitted for all initial EB-1C and NIW I-140 petitions filed on or after January 30. This completes USCIS’s implementation of premium processing availability for these immigrant visa categories, which it started in June 2022 and rolled out in incremental phases based on I-140 filing dates.
The premium processing upgrade may be requested by filing Form I-907 with the $2,500 filing fee and a copy of the I-797 Receipt Notice for the pending petition, or submitted with the initial filing. Unlike most categories for which premium processing is available, USCIS will take action on I-140 petitions in the EB-1C/NIW categories within 45 days of the I-907 request, rather than 15 days. Action on the case may be in the form of a decision or Request for Evidence.
Furthermore, USCIS provided additional information regarding anticipated premium processing availability for F-1 students, also initially announced in 2022, but which has not yet been implemented. An announcement is expected in March that will allow for premium upgrades of pending I-765 applications for F-1 students seeking employment authorization on the basis of OPT and STEM OPT training. In April, it is expected this premium processing availability will be expanded to include initial I-765 applicants for OPT and STEM OPT. USCIS also intends to allow for premium upgrades of pending I-539 applications for F-1 changes of status beginning in May, and for initial I-539 applications beginning in June. The premium processing fees for these categories are expected to be $1,500 for the I-765 form and $1,750 for the I-539 form, with 30-day processing for both.
By: Rebecca Chen
Rebecca Chen is a Partner at Reddy & Neumann. Her representation includes advising clients throughout the non-immigrant and immigrant visa application process, from initial filing, responding to various requests for evidence, and processing at overseas consulates. Her years of experience in the immigration field have made her a knowledgeable resource for complex business immigration matters.