Federal judge blocks new fees for work permit and asylum applications

September 29, 2020

BREAKING NEWS: On September 29, 2020 a federal judge decided that the government cannot increase fees for immigration applications on Friday, October 2. You can read more about the judge’s decision in this news article. It is possible that the government will appeal to change the judge’s decision – we will update this post as new information becomes available.

Before the judge’s decision, the government planned to increase fees for many immigration applications beginning on October 2. The proposed rule would have done the following:

  • Initial work permits: The fee for an initial work permit based on a pending asylum application would increase from $0 to $550.
  • Work permit renewals: The fee to renew work permits would increase from $410 to $550.
  • Asylum applications: The fee for asylum applications submitted to USCIS would increase from $0 to $50. The fee for asylum applications submitted to immigration court would continue to be $0.
  • Other applications: Fees for other USCIS applications would increase as well.
  • No fee waivers: USCIS would no longer waive fees for asylum seekers based on financial hardship.

The Asylum Seeker Advocacy Project (ASAP) opposes the government’s unjust rule. If you or your family members qualify for work authorization, we would still encourage you to apply quickly, while the judge’s temporary decision is in effect.

Note: This information is for individuals seeking asylum in the United States and is not a substitute for advice from an attorney.