H1B Visa 2017 Filing Fee

Any Changes to H1B Visa 2018 Filing Fee ? Summary of all Fee

In H1B Visa News by Kumar31 Comments

USCIS is yet to release official news that H1B Visa 2018 petitions, but many of you might be wondering regarding the fee. Are there any changes to the filing fee for this fiscal year ? How much does it actually cost an employer for filing the H1B Visa for FY 2018 . Lets review all the fees and their descriptions in this article.

Are there any changes to H1B Visa Filing Fee for FY 2018 ?
No, there are no changes except the base filing fee.  Last year for FY 2017, there were changes to the filing fee, the H1B petition filing fee increased by $4000 USD for certain employers who fall under the below category.

  • All the companies that have 50 or more employees and 50% of their employees are non-immigrant workers need to pay an additional fee of $4000 USD. The fee increase is applicable for new petitions and transfers, but not applicable to extension petitions with the same employer.  This fee is additional fee to the standard H1B fee that is applicable.

What is the actual H1B Filing Fee for FY 2018 quota ? What is the breakdown ?

H1B petition filing involves a set of fees that every employer has to pay. Not all of this applies to every petition filed, it varies by the company size and the other factors as explained below. Here is the breakdown of the fee

Fee type Fee in USD Details
 Base filing fee $460  For every petition ( went up in Dec 2016)
AICWA Fee
(American Competitiveness and Workforce Improvement Act of 1998)
$750

or
$1,500

 $750 – for employers with 1 to 25 full time employees )

$1500 – for employers with 26 or    more full time equivalent employee )

Fraud prevent & detection fee $500 Only applies to New H1Bs and Change of employers petitions only. Does not apply to Chile and Singapore based H1B1 petitions
Fee based on Public Law 114-113 $4000 Applicable, if 50 or more employees and more than 50% of employees are on H1B or L1 Visa status, required for new H1B filing and change of employers.
Read H1B fee increase $4000 rule to check if it applies to your case
Premium processing fee (Optional) $1,225  For faster adjudication within 15 calendar days.  As per this year’s press release, USCIS will consider the 15 day clock from starting from no later than May 16th.
Immigration Attorney Fee Varies from $500 to $3000  This varies depending on the attorney.  This fee applies to companies that work with third party immigration attorneys for filing the H1B Visa petitions. Some large organizations have in-house attorneys. If the employer does not have any in-house attorney, it would cost them anywhere from $500 to $3000.

In summary, depending on the size of the company, the H1B filing fee can vary anywhere from $1,600 USD to $7,400 USD + the Attorney fee( if any).

H1B Fee paid by you or employer ? Who pays for What when filing H1B visa petition ?

Many of you would wonder, who would pay for the H1B petition. For the most part, it is an employer’s expense. You should NOT pay for it. Below is a brief summary

Fee  component Cost Who Pays for it ? Why should they pay for it ?
Base filing fee $460 Employer or H1B Sponsor.
It is employer’s business expense as they intend to hire a highly skilled individual and bring them on-board
AICWA Fee $750 or $1,500 Employer/ H1B Sponsor.
It is employer’s business expense. Law requires that this fee is never passed to the employee being hired or any other  third party
Fraud prevent & detection fee $500 Employer.
It is employer’s business expense. Just like above, it is mandated by law and employee being hired should NOT pay for it.
Fee based on Public Law 114-113 $4000 Employer.
It is employer’s business expense. This is a law that was passed earlier in 2016 year under Omnibus bill.
Attorney Fee Varies Employer. It is employer’s business expense.
Premium processing fee (Optional) $1,225 Optional fee. Either employer or You ( Employee being hired).
If you bear it, the employer has to demonstrate to DOL that it was expedited due to your personal reasons.
Visa Stamping fee ( fee involved in getting H1B visa at US consulate ) varies by country Employee’s expense. All the costs involved in obtaining visa, including cost involved in translation of your credentials, etc. It will NOT be an employer’s expense. The employer will only send you the documents required for visa stamping.

To avoid confusion and protect the employee’s best interests, Department of labor(DOL) has a great tool that will help you verify. You can check out the article H1B Online advisory tool by DOL

Did you pay any fee ? What was your experience working with your employer for H1B filing ?

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Comments ( 31 )

  1. maven

    I would like to travel to Canada for short periods (3 days at at time, mostly weekends) .
    Apparently they need to file for “consular processing” for me to be allowed to travel, and there is some hesitation to file for this consular processing by my employer for some reason.
    Would you know more about it, and would you know the extra costs associated with it ?

  2. Rohith

    HI,
    My employer asked me to send all documents , and also asking me when I will be able to send him the h1b fee of $3500.
    But how can I trust by paying $3500 ?
    Is there anyway I can catch hold of them before paying the fee because I don’t have any idea of this company if this is real or fake company.
    However the company is listed in the E-verify website and also in federal state website.
    Please help me how can I make sure this company is genuine

    Thank you

  3. Kumar

    Hi My self Kumar,

    I am planning to apply H1 B, can a y one please guide to how to proceed further and wht are the charges to be bear by me.

  4. Fisuot

    hi,
    My employer wants me to share the h1b cost. They haven’t filed H1b yet and they are planning to file for me and 2 other this year.
    Can you please guide me on this?

    Thank you

  5. Sanjay karthik

    Dear sir,

    My name got picked in the lottery 2016 but unfortunately my profile has gone to rfv and the consultancy guy who helped me applying visa is saying we have spend another 3000 dollars to sort this out. Is that true? why do we need to spend additional amount?? Can you please help me getting the answers please? Thanks in advance.

  6. Lucas Scocchia

    I currently work in the USA under OPT. My status is up come MAY 31. My company is very open to any imimgraiton status to keep me here in the US. I am form Canada originally. Is the H1B a timing issue? Have i missed the lottery for this year? and if so, when can i apply for the next year and then be eligible to work?

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Lucas Scocchia,

      As a Canadian citizen, you may use TN visa to work while your employer applies for H-1, which you may or may not receive due to lottery.

  7. Valour

    I graduated in Engineering in 2015. Co-founded a startup and worked for a year and a half for its growth. Now I want to move on and pursue a job in USA or Canada. I gave interviews and got selected for overseas posting. I have never gone outside India before. The mandatory prerequisite told by employer is that I must hold a H1B Visa. (Cap exempt, petition approval). What can I do in this case when I don’t have the visa?

    1. administrator
      Kumar

      Valour,
      Well, all you can do is wait until April of next year and apply for H1B visa through your employer. You may have to go through lottery as well. If you get picked in lottery and your petition is approved, you can start to work from October of next year.

  8. ALKA Gujarathi

    I am working for indian iT company. Petition approval is expected and will come any time now.
    Shall I quit my company and can apply for visa with other company in future?

  9. UrbanBay

    I wanted to double check my understanding. So a new petitioner who’s never filed for H1B before would still need to pay the $4,000 fee even if they don’t have more than 50 employees and not 50% of employees are H-1B, L-1A or L-1B nonimmigrants. (My prospective employer is a small organization and I’m pretty sure don’t have any foreign worker.)

  10. ALKA Gujarathi

    I am working in service based project of international bank. I got selected in lottery.
    I have good offer from same banking client but in India.
    My company is not disclosing any details. They will update once they got response from USCIS.

    How much fine now I need to pay if I quit?
    As per now, I just got confirmation of lottery. Considering August end, I could have got more information about my H1B status.

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      ALKA Gujarathi,

      What do you mean by fine to pay? The H-1 fees need to be paid by the employer and not employee. So you are not on hook to pay anything related to H-1 fees. If your employer asks otherwise, then he is violating H-1B rules.

      1. ALKA Gujarathi

        Petition approval is expected and will come any time now.
        Shall I quit my company and can apply for visa with other company in future?

        1. administrator
          Saurabh

          ALKA Gujarathi,

          What visa do you want to apply through another employer? A cap-exempt petition would require current petition to be approved first. If it is not approved and withdrawn (b/c you left the company), then you have to go through the cap again.

  11. issral khan

    Your Comment *
    guyz….. in b.biotech(biotechnology) 3rd year……n i wanna go us….so plzzz give me info that how i can get a vise of best cost…….n how i can apply for it

    1. administrator
      Kumar

      You need to take GRE, TOEFL and apply first to schools, then comes the visa part. I suggest you read some articles under Study in USA section.

  12. angel

    Hi , can you please guide me if employer breaks the contract with the employee due to any reason then in that case whether employee is supposed to pay for H1B fees?because in my contract which i signed 1 year ago with some recruitment firm it was mentioned that I am responsible for all the direct and indirect cost which my agency has spent on me. now they are telling me to pay around 3000$ for H1B fees which they filed this year in april..but it was not selected due to cap.kindly help me

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Angel,

      Are you saying that your H-1 petition was filed, but not selected in lottery and now the employer/agency is asking to pay 3000 USD as part of H-1B filing fees?

      That is illegal. By law they are required to pay for all H-1B fees and not you. Tell them what H-1B law is.

  13. TruetoBe

    What will happen if employer apply for H1B and the employee quits before the lottery decision? If its not picked up, the employer will get back fees. But if its picked up in lottery but if the employee is not available in company, will the employer can still withdraw the petition and get back the fees?

    Also it would be great if there is any way on how to check whether the employer has more than 50% on H1Bs or L1 (to know whether the employer paid extra 4000$ fee ).

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      TruetoBe,

      Once the petition is selected in the lottery, no fees is returned in any scenario.

      Your employer is the best person to know how many employees are on H1/L1. And it should not matter to you, as by law they are responsible for paying the fees and not you.

      1. TruetoBe

        Thanks a lot Saurabh. got the answer. The intention behind my question was – My employer made all of us to sign the bond for $8k as visa expense/Attorney expense if we quit in between. So thought to check whether its really that much investment from employer end. Looks like if that $4K is applicable , it make sense (but definitely they will not disclose whether they paid 4k$ or not). As per your answer looks like until the lottery result comes, neither my company fire me not I can quit 🙂

        Once again thanks for your timely help.

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      kalyan,
      New fees will be applicable soon after President signs into a law and its passed down to USCIS. If it happens prior to April 2016 (most likely), then that’s when it will happen.

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