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USCIS suspends premium processing

USCIS has temporarily stopped taking requests for premium processing. Premium processing allows applicants to fast-track the visa application processing time to 15 days–for an additional fee of $1,440. Without premium processing, USCIS can take up to 6-8 months to review applications. If you’re curious, you can always look up USCIS case processing times here.

If your case was already filed using premium processing

USCIS is still honoring the 15-day timeline for now. Our team will let you know if this changes. In situations where USCIS is unable to review your petition within the 15 days, they will return the check for the $1,440 filing fee.

If your case hasn’t been filed yet

You won’t be able to take advantage of premium processing right now. However, if the premium processing option is later reinstated by USCIS, eligible cases already filed with regular processing can request an upgrade to premium processing

If you need to extend your current status soon

As long as you submit your extension request before your status expires, you might be able to continue working in the US for an additional 240 days (~8 months) while your request is pending. You can read more about the 240-day rule here.

That 240-day rule is available for many visa categories, including the O-1, E-3, H-1B, and TN. But remember: you must submit your application before your status expires. If you don’t know how to find your I-94 expiration date, read our brief explainer here.

About the author:

Allison Davy

Vice President Marketing, Legalpad

Allison helps startup founders from around the world navigate the complex U.S. immigration system so they can pursue their goals and purpose.