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USCIS Expands Premium Processing to E-3 Nonimmigrant Petitions

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) today announced that premium processing service is now available for Australian E-3 nonimmigrant extensions and changes of status. 

Beginning today, sponsoring employers are able to request premium processing concurrently with their E-3 extension and status change filings on Form I-129, as well as premium processing upgrades of pending E-3 extensions and changes of status. Premium processing is available for a fee of $2,500 and allows the petitioner to receive a USCIS response – either an adjudication or a request for evidence – within 15 calendar days.

Additional expansions of premium processing service

Currently, USCIS offers premium processing for certain Form I-129 nonimmigrant petitions and certain Form I-140 immigrant petitions. Today’s announcement marks the first expansion of premium processing under legislation passed in late 2020.   

The new law directs USCIS to broaden premium service to a number of additional employment-based immigration benefits applications and petitions, including Form I-140 petitions for EB-1 multinational managers and executives, EB-2 physicians, and those seeking a National Interest Waiver of the labor certification requirement; applications for employment authorization on Form I-765; and applications to change or extend status for the dependents of H-1B, L-1 and other principal nonimmigrant categories on Form I-539. The law also gives the USCIS the authority to designate other case types for premium service. It is not yet known whether or when USCIS will exercise its authority to open premium processing to other case types specified in the legislation.

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