Premium processing service is only available for change of status into students/exchange visitors (F, M, J)
US Citizenship and Immigration Services is expanding premium processing for applicants filing Form I-539, Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status, and seeking a change of status to F-1, F-2, M-1, M-2, J-1, or J-2 nonimmigrant status.
Online filing of Form I-907, Request for Premium Processing Service, will also be available for these applicants, the immigration agency announced Monday.
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More than 200,000 Indians are currently studying in various US universities. India is the second-largest source of international students in the US.
A record-breaking 125,000 Indians were issued student visas in 2022 with one out of every five student visas issued in India, according to US officials.
The premium processing expansion for certain Form I-539 applicants will occur in phases, and nonimmigrants requesting premium processing should not file before these dates, the agency said.
Beginning June 13, USCIS will accept Form I-907 requests, filed via paper form or online, for applicants seeking a change of status to F-1, F-2, M-1, M-2, J-1, or J-2 status, who have a pending Form I-539, Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status.
Beginning June 26, USCIS will accept Form I-907 requests, filed either via paper form or online, for applicants seeking a change of status to F-1, F-2, M-1, M-2, J-1, or J-2 status, when filed together with Form I-539.
This phase of premium processing service is only available for change of status requests. Premium processing is not available for individuals seeking an extension of stay in M-1 or M-2 status, the agency said.
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USCIS said it will reject premium processing requests for a pending Form I-539 if received before June 13. USCIS will reject premium processing requests when filed together with a Form I-539 if USCIS receives the request before June 26.
USCIS cautioned that applicants must submit Form I-907 the same way they submit Form I-539.
If an applicant mails a paper Form I-539 to USCIS, they must mail a paper Form I-907.
If an applicant submits Form I-539 online, they must submit Form I-907 online.
Applicants must submit their biometrics before premium processing can begin for these specific categories. Even if USCIS accepts an applicantâ€™s Form I-907 and accompanying fees, the time limit for premium processing will not start running until the applicant and all co-applicants included on the Form I-539 submit their biometrics.
USCIS said it may reject an applicantâ€™s Form I-907 and/or Form I-539 if submitted with another benefit request, including multiple Forms I-907 requests filed together.
To file Form I-907 online, an applicant must first create a USCIS online account, which provides a convenient and secure method to submit forms, pay fees, and track the status of any pending USCIS immigration request throughout the adjudication process.
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There is no cost to set up a USCIS online account, which offers a variety of features, including the ability to communicate with USCIS through a secure inbox and respond to Requests for Evidence online, the immigration agency said.
USCIS said the expansion of premium processing is part of its efforts to increase efficiency and reduce burdens to the overall immigration system.
USCIS is expanding premium processing in a phased approach to ensure compliance with the with the Emergency Stopgap USCIS Stabilization Act, which prohibits the expansion of premium processing if it will increase processing times for the immigration benefit requests, it said.
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