Employers may soon face additional fees for extending work visas for foreign employees under a new DHS proposal. This proposal includes a $4,000 fee for H-1B visa extensions and a $4,500 fee for L-1 visa extensions.

Employers could soon be required to pay additional fees to extend work visas for foreign employees under a new Department of Homeland Security (DHS) proposal. The proposed rule mandates a $4,000 fee for extending an H-1B visa and a $4,500 fee for extending an L-1 visa. These fees are part of the 9/11 Response and Biometric Entry-Exit Fee, which currently only applies to initial visa petitions and changes of employers.

The 9/11 Response and Biometric Entry-Exit Fee was established to fund national security programs, including systems to track the entry and exit of non-U.S. citizens. Initiated by the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2016, this fee applies to certain H-1B and L-1 visa petitions.

Existing Fee Structure

Currently, employers with 50 or more employees in the United States, where over 50% of the workforce is on H-1B or L-1 visas, must pay this fee for initial petitions or when there is a change of employer. The fees are $4,000 for H-1B petitions and $4,500 for L-1 petitions.

Proposed Amendments

The new rule proposes expanding these fees to include visa extension petitions. This means that employers would be required to pay the $4,000 or $4,500 fee not only for initial petitions or changes of employer but also for extending the employment period of current H-1B or L-1 visa holders.

Justification for the Amendment

The DHS has provided several justifications for this proposed amendment :

  • Enhanced Funding : The increased fee will provide additional resources required to maintain and enhance the biometric entry-exit system.
  • Uniform Application : The amendment aims to ensure consistent application of fees across all petition types, promoting fairness in the process.
  • Strengthened Security: Adequate funding will support the maintenance and advancement of the biometric entry-exit system, crucial for immigration monitoring and bolstering national security.


Potential Effects on Employers :

If enacted, the rule will raise expenses for employers heavily dependent on H-1B and L-1 visas. Businesses that frequently seek visa extensions may encounter significant financial pressures, prompting them to reconsider their hiring practices and strategies for extending employment for foreign workers.

Currently, the DHS is soliciting public comments on the proposed rule. Stakeholders and the public have the opportunity to submit feedback until Ju…

Stay informed with VisaBud for the latest updates on visa regulations!