On September 30, 2020, the evening before announcing that he and the First Lady of the US tested positive for COVID-19, President Trump signed HR 8337, the continuing resolution bill funding the US government through December 11, 2020.
As part of this bill, through the “Emergency Stopgap USCIS Stabilization Act,” Congress has provided for the expansion of US Citizenship and Immigration Services’ (USCIS) premium processing service offerings. Most importantly, the bill amends INA §286(u) by eliminating the language limiting premium processing to employment-based petitions and how the premium processing funds are to be utilized by the agency.
Premium processing services will now be available for the following nonimmigrant and immigrant categories:
- Employment-based nonimmigrant petitions and related dependent applications;
- Applications to change or extend nonimmigrant status;
- Applications for employment authorization documents;
- Certain employment-based immigrant petitions, including expanding to include EB-1C and EB-2 NIW; and
- Other immigration benefits as USCIS deems appropriate.
It is expected that the fee and processing times for premium processing services will vary depending on category of petition or application.
Stay tuned for additional information on the expansion of USCIS premium processing, including implementation schedules, processing times, and petition/application-specific fee amounts.