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Let’s Talk About Biometrics USCIS Fee

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Let’s talk about the biometrics USCIS fee. Hi, I’m Jim Hacking, an immigration lawyer, practicing law throughout the United States at our offices in St. Louis, Missouri, and San Diego, California. For many, many USCIS applications where the beneficiary is within the United States, so cases like naturalization, adjustment of status, sometimes extension of status, optional practical training, getting a work card, asylum, all these things, you’re going to have your biometrics taken. And we want to talk about the fee that’s associated with that because there are lots of questions about it. 

Including:

  • How much does the biometrics fee cost?
  • When should I pay for it?

How much does it cost?

You can usually just include that filing fee in the check that you’re sending in for the benefit. So when you write out that check to the Department of Homeland Security, then you can go ahead and include the $85. So if the application is 10,040, you would add the 85 for the biometrics set, those are the current fees now, and that would be one check. You don’t have to send a separate check for biometrics.

Immigration Benefit Request New Fee ($) Old Fee ($)
G–1041 Genealogy Index Search Request 65 20
G–1041A Genealogy Records Request (Copy from Microfilm) 65 20
G–1041A Genealogy Records Request (Copy from Textual Record) 65 35
I–90 Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card 455 365
I–102 Application for Replacement/Initial Nonimmigrant Arrival-Departure Document 445 330
I–129/129CW Petition for a Nonimmigrant worker 460 325
I–129F Petition for Alien Fiancé(e) 535 340
I-130 Petition for Alien Relative 535 420
I-131/I-131A Application for Travel Document 575 360
I–140 Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker 700 580
I-191 Application for Relief Under Former Section 212(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) 930 585
I-192 Application for Advance Permission to Enter as Nonimmigrant 585/9301 585
I-193 Application for Waiver of Passport and/or Visa 585 585
I-212 Application for Permission to Reapply for Admission into the U.S. After Deportation or Removal 930 585
I–290B Notice of Appeal or Motion 675 630
I–360 Petition for Amerasian Widow(er) or Special Immigrant 435 405
I–485 Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status 1,140 985
I-485 Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status (certain applicants under the age of 14 years) 750 635
I–526 Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur 3,675 1,500
I–539 Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status 370 290
I–600/600A Petition to Classify Orphan as an Immediate Relative/Application for Advance Petition Processing of Orphan Petition 775 720
I-601 Application for Waiver of Ground of Excludability 930 585
I–601A Application for Provisional Unlawful Presence Waiver 630 585
I-612 Application for Waiver of the Foreign Residence Requirement (Under Section 212(e) of the INA, as Amended) 930 585
I–687 Application for Status as a Temporary Resident under Section 245A
of the Immigration and Nationality Act
1,130 1,130
I–690 Application for Waiver of Grounds of Inadmissibility 715 200
I–694 Notice of Appeal of Decision 890 755
I–698 Application to Adjust Status From Temporary to Permanent Resident
(Under Section 245A of the INA)
1,670 1,020
I–751 Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence 595 505
I–765 Application for Employment Authorization 410 380
I-800/800A Petition to Classify Convention Adoptee as an Immediate Relative/Application for Determination of Suitability to Adopt a Child from a Convention Country 775 720
I–800A Supp. 3 Request for Action on Approved Form I–800A 385 360
I–817 Application for Family Unity Benefits 600 435
I–824 Application for Action on an Approved Application or Petition 465 405
I–829 Petition by Entrepreneur to Remove Conditions 3,750 3,750
I–910 Application for Civil Surgeon Designation 785 615
I–924 Application for Regional Center Designation Under the Immigrant
Investor Program
17,795 6,230
I–924A Annual Certification of Regional Center 3,035 0
I–929 Petition for Qualifying Family Member of a U–1 Nonimmigrant 230 215
N–300 Application to File Declaration of Intention 270 250
N–336 Request for Hearing on a Decision in Naturalization Proceedings 700 650
N–400 Application for Naturalization2 640 595
N–470 Application to Preserve Residence for Naturalization Purposes 355 330
N–565 Application for Replacement Naturalization/Citizenship Document 555 345
N–600/N–600K Application for Certificate of Citizenship 1,170 600/5503
USCIS Immigrant Fee 220 165
Biometric Services Fee 85 85

Source: uscis.gov

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When do you have to pay for it?

Now, we have come up with this handy dandy poster for our office, so that people get it right. It’s just a reminder to our team that a lot of times, for young people and old people, you’re not going to have to pay that biometrics fee. So if they’re over 79 or under 14, you most likely won’t have to pay the biometrics fee. 

Now, there’s a lot of confusion about the USCIS fee, and they will sometimes send the case back because they insist that someone has to pay the biometrics fee even though based on their age, they don’t, and so there’s a lot of confusion about that. You might have to send your application a few times before they understand.

It seems like their system for calculating who’s eligible for the biometrics fee waiver and who is not is broken. They seem to make a mistake about this all the time. They have gotten a little bit better, but you might have to be insistent if that’s important to you. And other times, you’ll send in the fee and they’ll say, you don’t have to pay it. So it’s really sort of a screwball situation.

Now, during the COVID time, USCIS greatly increased the use of old biometrics. So typically, it’s 14 or 16 months, if the biometrics are that old, they won’t reuse them, but lately, we’ve been hearing and getting a biometric services appointment notice from USCIS that says that they’re going to use all biometrics and that the applicant doesn’t have to come back downtown or to the USCIS application support center to have their biometrics conducted. 

So biometrics is something you need to pay attention to. You can get your application rejected, you might need to get it in by a deadline, and that rejection can screw you up. So biometrics can cause trouble in some cases. 

The biometrics itself is pretty straightforward. You just go to the support center, you’ll get fingerprinted and you’ll get your picture taken, and generally, they’ll do that again when you come in for your interview. But that $85 fee is for the picture and for the fingerprinting.

Let us help!

So if you have questions about biometrics or about whether or not your case is subject to it, number one, you should check the instructions. Number two, you can contact us at 314-961-8200. You can email us at [email protected]. Be sure to join us on our Facebook group, which is called Immigrant Home.

If you like this video, we ask that you please share it on social and that you subscribe to our YouTube channel so that you get updates whenever we make videos just like this one. Thanks a lot and have a great day.

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