What are the immigration fee waiver guidelines?

Most USCIS forms you file will come with a fee.

And if the fee is not paid for, the forms are usually immediately rejected. The USCIS, however, does provide the opportunity for you to waive certain fees if you are eligible.

Form I-912

The USCIS is the agency in charge of lawful immigration to the United States. This agency is largely funded through the fees collected from the millions of applications they receive each year for various processes. Form I-912 was created for people who are not able to pay their fees.

Filing Form I-912 is free. The form must be signed by any applicant over the age of 14. A parent or legal guardian must sign on the behalf of anyone under the age of 14.

To be eligible for a fee waiver, you must demonstrate that you are unable to pay the fee. The USCIS will look through your application carefully and determine if you are eligible. Waivers are granted on a case-by-case basis, which means that every case will be examined individually and not on a set standard.

Fee Waiver Evaluation

USCIS evaluates your request in three ways:

The first method of evaluation is to see if you are already receiving a government benefit due to low income. If you are already receiving means-tested benefits, your I-912 will be immediately approved.

The second method of evaluation is to see if your household income is at or below 150% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines. With enough evidence of household income, the I-912 will most likely be approved.

The third method of evaluation is to see your current hardships that demand consideration for a fee waiver. Hardships include the loss of employment. After providing evidence, the USCIS will decide on the I-912.

Fee Waiver Forms

Not all forms are eligible for a fee waiver. A Request for Fee Waiver can be made only for the following USCIS forms:

  • Form I-90
  • Form I-131
  • Form I-192
  • Form I-290B
  • Form I-485
  • Form I-596
  • Form I-601
  • Form I-751
  • Form I-765
  • Form I-817
  • Form I-821
  • Form I-881
  • Form N-300
  • Form N-336
  • Form N-400
  • Form N-470
  • Form N-565
  • Form N-600
  • Form N-600K

Biometric services fees can also be waived for any form, even ones not mentioned above.

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