In an effort that will benefit foreign students and exchange visitors, USCIS has announced its expansion of premium processing (Form I-907 requests) to include applicants filing Form I-539, Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status, and seeking to change status to F-1, F-2, M-1, M-2, J-1, or J-2 nonimmigrant status. Thus, for an additional government filing fee of $1,750, USCIS will process these applications on an expedited timeline of 15 calendar days. This change marks an important shift for individuals who are already in the United States wishing to change to student or exchange visitor status since they can avoid the uncertainty that comes with long processing times as well as the need to travel and visa process abroad.
This specific expansion will occur in two phases and applicants requesting premium processing should not file before these dates:
- Beginning June 13, 2023, USCISwill acceptForm 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, 2023, 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, when filed together with Form I-539, Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status.
In addition to the referenced dates, there are several additional important notes to this premium processing expansion:
- This phase is only available for change of status requests and not available for individuals seeking extensions of stay in M-1 or M-2 status.
- Form I-907 must besubmitted in the same format as the accompanying Form I-539, meaning that a paperForm I-539 must be accompanied by a paper Form I-907,and an electronic Form I-539 must be accompanied by an electronic Form I-907.
- Applicants must submit their biometrics before premium processing can begin for these specific categories.Even if USCIS accepts Form I-907 and accompanying fees, the premium processing timeframewill not begin to run until the applicant and all co-applicants on the associated Form I-539 submit their biometrics.
- To file Form I-907 online, applicants must create a USCIS online account.
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