New Year, New Fees, New Forms (01/04/17)

Effective Dec 23, 2016, filing fees for the form I-129 increased to $460 per petition. Fees also increased for the I-539 petition to extend/change status (used for spouses and dependents) to $370 and for the I-824 petition for action on an approved application or petition (usually used to request a duplicate I-797 notice of approval) to $465.

Also, USCIS has released updated versions of several forms, including the I-129 and the I-539, and petitioners should begin using them immediately. The form I-907 for Premium Processing Service is unchanged. Previous editions of the newly updated forms will only be accepted by USCIS until February 21, 2017, so it is best for petitioners to begin using the new versions right away. Note that the look and feel of the I-129 has not changed, so the guidance for completing it remains the same.

**Update** Note that USCIS released another I-129 on 1/17/17, which underscores how important it is, as a general practice, to visit and download the most recently posted form whenever preparing a visa petition, whether you are engaging an artist for the first time or the fortieth.