The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced a new expansion to its premium processing offerings. According to the announcement, the USCIS has made this processing available for those seeking to change their status. It would affect applicants filing Applications to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status (Form I-539) to change their status to F-1, F-2, M-1, M-2, J-1, or J-2 non-immigrant status.
As with the expansion of premium processing, this specific expansion for Form I-539 applicants will occur in phases. As such, applicants looking to file this way should wait until the appropriate date. These expansions will occur in two phases which are:
Premium processing requests filed with Form I-539s before June 26, 2023, will receive rejections by the USCIS. In addition, interested parties must ensure they file Form I-907 the same way they filed Form I-539. For example, a digitally filed Form I-539 must have a digitally filed Form I-907 for the USCIS to consider the premium processing request.
This expansion to premium processing service will only become available for those attempting to change their status. As a result, it does not apply to those requesting an extension of stay in M-1 or M-2 status. The timer for the premium processing deadline will begin after the individuals covered by Form I-539 have submitted their biometrics.
This latest expansion to premium processing will benefit students and potential student employers. This change would allow more timely processing for completing the requests. Premium processing will cost a $1,750 fee. This cost provides a 30-day adjudication period after submitting all biometrics, and USCIS accepts the form and payment.
Employers hiring students and non-immigrant workers must remember to complete the employment eligibility verification (Form I-9) process. Unfortunately, many find workers confused by the Form I-9 regulations and what documents they may use to verify their identity and authorization to work in the United States. The best way to ensure continued compliance is by incorporating an electronic I-9 management tool into the onboarding process. This tool can provide step-by-step guidance and reminders when action is required.
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