Updated on 12.06.2024

Visa question of the month - Receipt and rejection of USCIS applications after fee change

Your question: Our US subsidiary submitted an application for an L-1 work permit to the USCIS over a week ago and has not yet received confirmation of receipt despite Premium Processing. What can we do?

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Your question:

Over a week ago, our US subsidiary submitted an application for an L-1 work permit by courier to the US immigration authority USCIS for one of our employees from Germany. Unfortunately, we have not received any confirmation of receipt to date, even though we have selected Premium Processing. The employee assignment is very urgent and we are getting a little nervous about what happened to the application. What can we do?

Our answer:

In fact, it is somewhat unusual if the US location has not yet received a confirmation of receipt (by e-mail). Normally, the contact person indicated in the I-907 application form should receive a Receipt Notice by e-mail from the responsible USCIS Service Center no later than the first or second day after delivery by the courier. Only then is the application considered officially accepted and will be processed further.

There may be several reasons why this has not yet happened:

  1. The simplest explanation would be that there can always be small delays in sending the Receipt Notice by e-mail via the Premium Processing Service. If you still have not received an e-mail or a Receipt Notice by mail after a week, you should contact the responsible Service Center (currently USCIS Texas Service Center) by e-mail (stating the petitioner, beneficiary and the tracking number of your courier shipment).
    If this first step is not successful, the US location can only continue to wait to see whether an e-mail confirmation is sent or whether the Receipt Notice arrives at the branch office by regular US mail within the next few days.
  2. In addition, an application for an L-1 work permit will only be accepted by the Service Center if all minimum submission standards are met. This is determined in advance at the authorities' incoming mail center. Here it is checked whether the correct application forms (I-129, I-907) have been submitted. The payment of the necessary application fees is also strictly checked. This can be done by application check, money order or credit card. If there is a deficiency here, the application is returned to the petitioner (US location) unprocessed by means of a Rejection Notice by US mail.
    Of course, the USCIS Service Center responsible for the individual application must also be selected in advance (currently Texas Service Center for L) and the correct US address. Here, too, mistakes happen again and again.

Unfortunately, many USCIS application procedures are currently affected by rejections. The reason for this is the fee adjustment implemented on April 1, 2024, which is causing confusion for many companies.

As a result, (for instance) L-1 proceedings are not only subject to higher and different fees, but these are also partly based on the number of employees in the USA (i.e. the size of the company). In addition, a distinction is made between initial and renewal applications – different fees also apply here. In particular, the newly introduced Asylum Program Fee is not known to many L-1 applicants and has not been communicated so prominently on the USCIS website.
In addition, the Premium Processing fee (accelerated processing) was increased separately a few months ago.

The method of payment also poses a hurdle for many applicants. For example, cheques must be issued exactly according to specifications of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services; the same applies to credit card payments via form G-1450. In particular, certain fees may not be combined on a cheque or credit card form, but must be indicated individually.

In the course of the fee adjustment, many application forms were also revised and must be used in this (new) version from a certain date. This is also a frequent source of errors.

If the application is submitted with the wrong application fees or forms in the Premium Processing procedure, the process will not be processed further. You will then receive the application back unprocessed with a rejection notice indicating the reason for refusal. The application must then be corrected and resubmitted.

So please first check again whether all USCIS fees have been correctly included in the correct payment method and whether the correct application forms have been used, completed in full and signed.

However, it is advisable to visit the USCIS website or the respective subpages before submitting your application. Please note that you may find daily updated information on new versions, responsibilities, etc. there.

On the fees page of the USCIS you will find a lot of information about the terms of payment. In addition, on a special subpage you will find the new USCIS fee schedule as an overview in PDF format and as a tool or drop-down menu with the option of selecting and displaying the currently valid application fees.

Furthermore, the current application forms and their versions are published on the forms pages of the USCIS.

If you apply for the L visa through us, we will ensure that all the requirements of the USCIS are met. We will of course check all documents (forms, checks, etc.) to ensure that they are up-to-date, complete and correct.

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Updated on 12.06.2024