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USCIS Premium Processing – Availability, Fee, Contact, Common FAQs

USCIS accepts various forms related to different types of applications or benefits requests submitted to them. Each of those forms’ processing times can vary depending on various factors, such as the workload and time taken to process a form. Many of those forms filed with USCIS do not have any Service Level Agreement (SLA) for the decision from USCIS. In some cases, you may be able to submit an expedite request with USCIS for some forms, but not for all of them.

This is where the USCIS premium processing option comes into the picture that provides an option for processing with an SLA. This page tracks complete details about Premium Processing with USCIS, latest news, what forms are eligible, current availability, fee, how to raise it, how to contact USCIS and all other details.

What is USCIS Premium Processing?

Premium Processing is a service offered by USCIS for faster processing of certain forms filed with them. If an eligible petition or form is filed under premium processing with USCIS, they guarantee the processing to be done within 15 calendar days.

If they do not meet the 15 calendar days Service Level Agreement(SLA), they will refund the premium processing fee and continue the expedited processing.  

Eligible Forms, Visa Types for Premium Processing?

USCIS Premium processing option is primarily available for anyone who files Forms I-129, which is used to file petition for non-immigrant worker, and Form I-140, which is used to file Immigrant petition for alien worker. Below are the various popular visa types that use these Forms.

Premium Processing Visa Classifications using Form I-129

Visa ClassificationProcessing
in Calendar Days
USCIS Form Description of the Visa Classification
E-1, E-215 Days I-129 Visa for Treaty Trader, Treaty Investor
E-315 DaysI-129Certain Professionals from Australia
H-1B 15 Days I-129 Foreign Worker visa in Speciality Occupation
H-2B15 Days I-129 Temporary worker doing non-agricultural services
H-315 Days I-129 Trainee / Special education exchange visitor
L-1A15 Days I-129 Intracompany Transferee as Executive/Manager
L-1B15 Days I-129 Intracompany Transferee with Specialized Knowledge
LZ (Blanket L-1)15 Days I-129 Blanket L-1 for employers who meet certain
O-1, O-215 Days I-129 Extraordinary ability related visas.
P-1, P-1S,
P-2, P-2S,
P-3, P-3S
15 Days I-129 Various visa types for athletes, entertainers, etc.
Q-115 Days I-129 International Cultural exchange alien
R-115 Days I-129 Religious Occupation Foreigner
TN-1, TN-215 Days I-129 NAFTA Professionals Canada, Mexico
USCIS Forms, Non-immigrant Visa Types eligible for Premium Processing

Premium Processing Visa Classifications using Form I-140

Immigrant Visa Processing
in Calendar Days
USCIS Form Description of Immigrant Visa (Green Card) Classification
(E11, E12)
15 Days I-140 Extraordinary ability aliens, professors, researchers
EB-1 (E13)45 Days I-140Multinational managers & executives.
15 Days I-140Professionals with advanced degree or exceptional ability
(E21 – NIW)
45 DaysI-140National Interest waiver(NIW) professionals
(E31, E32, EW3)
15 Days I-140 Skilled workers, professionals, Others
USCIS Immigrant Visa Types, forms that are eligible for Premium Processing

Premium Processing Visa Classifications using Form I-539

Time in
USCIS FormDescription of Visa Classification
F1, F230 DaysI-539International Students, their dependents
M1, M230 DaysI-539Vocational Students, their dependents
J1, J230 DaysI-539Exchange Visitors, their dependents

Premium Processing Visa Classifications using Form I-765(EAD)

Time in
USCIS FormDescription of EAD Category Code
(c)(3)(A)30 DaysI-765F1 Student, Pre-completion OPT
(c)(3)(B)30 DaysI-765F1 Student, Post-completion OPT
(c)(3)(C)30 DaysI-765F1 Student, STEM Optional Practical Training (OPT)

Premium Processing for EAD, H4, L2, Others : US Congress passed a Bill to expand premium processing for additional forms and visa types. It was signed by the president into law on October 1st, 2020. USCIS has implemented premium processing for some of those listed in the law, but rest of them are yet to be implemented. We will keep this page updated as USCIS extends the premium processing for other forms.

  • H4 Visa Extensions & COS, H4 EAD
  • L2 Extensions & COS, L2 EAD
  • EAD applications filed with USCIS, only F1 OPT, STEM OPT are implemented so far.
  • Change of Status(COS), Extensions filed using Form I-539 for B1/B2, other. Only F, M, J related applications have premium processing.

Any form or visa type that is not listed above are not eligible for premium processing with USCIS.

How much is the Premium Processing Fee?

The USCIS Premium Processing Fee is as below by the Form Type. The fee increased from February 26, 2024. The revised fee is also shown in the table below.

Form TypePetition/ Application
Visa Category
Old FeeCurrent Fee from
Feb 26, 2024
Form I-129,
Petition for a
Nonimmigrant Worker
H1B, H-3,
L1A, L1B, LZ,
E1, E2, E3,
O1, O2,
P1, P1S, P2, P2S,
P3, P3S, Q1
TN1, TN2

Form I-129,
Petition for a
Nonimmigrant Worker
Form I-140,
Immigrant Petition
(Green Card)
for Alien Worker
EB-1 (E11, E12, E13),
EB-2 (E21, NIW & non-NIW),
EB-3 (E31, E32, EW3)

Form I-539,
Application to
Extend or Change
Nonimmigrant Status
F1, F2
M1, M2
J1, J2,
E1, E2, E3
L2, H4,
O3, P4, R2
Form I-765,
Application for
Certain F1 Students
EAD Category Codes:
C03A, C03B, C03C
USCIS Premium Processing Fee Table – Current and Old Fees by Visa Type

If paying by check, you need to make it payable for “U.S. Department of Homeland Security”

How to file Premium Processing for a Form or Petition?

To file a petition in premium processing, you need to complete Form I-907, which is called “Request for Premium Processing Service” as per instructions, attach respective fee and submit this form along with Form I-129 or I-140. Usually, the petitioner, who can be employer or their attorney/ representative, would do this.  

If you would like to upgrade an existing normal processing petition into premium processing,  you need to send the receipt notice of petition and completed form I-907 to the respective service centre, where the petition is currently processed. If there was any transfer notice given to other service center, that should be included as well.

What Edition of the Form to use with increase in Fee?

USCIS new premium processing fee is effective starting from Feb 26th, 2024. They have released a new edition of the form I-907 as well.

Starting April 26th, they will only accept the new form that has “02/26/24” as the edition. See the below screenshot of the actual FORM I-907 with details of the new edition that reads “Edition 02/26/24”.

USCIS Premium Processing FORM I-907 - New Edition Details
USCIS Premium Processing FORM I-907 – New Edition Details

What to expect with Premium Processing in 15 or 30 Calendar Days?

USCIS mentions that if a petition is filed under premium processing, they will process the respective petition, adjudicate within 15 or 30 calendar days and issue one of the following:

  • Approval Notice.
  • Denial Notice
  • Notice of Intent to Deny (NOID)
  • Request for Evidence (RFE)
  • Open an Investigation for fraud or misrepresentation

USCIS Premium Processing Timeline – When does it Start?

The 15 or 30 Calendar Days Clock for USCIS premium processing starts from the day USCIS receives the correctly filed I-907 form for premium processing along with required fee at the correct address location tied to the form.  

If there is an RFE or NOID given for the underlying I-129 or I-140 petition, then the 15 days clock stops and it re-starts from the day, USCIS receives the RFE or NOID response.  So, technically, it takes Calendar days from the day you submit RFE or NOID response to USCIS.   

Also, you need to factor in couple of days for the mail to be received or sent, this is slightly grey area and many get worried, if they do not hear in exact 15 days. The processing can spill over by couple of days with the mail processing.

There were talks to change the processing time clock from 15 calendar days to 15 business days. But, these changes were blocked by court.

Current Premium Processing Availability

The below availability is up to date as of March 2024

Visa Classification USCIS Form Availability Status
E-1, E-2 , E-3 I-129Available
H-1B I-129Available
H-2B I-129Available
H-3 I-129Available
L-1A I-129Available
L-1B I-129Available
LZ (L-1) I-129Available
O-1, O-2 I-129Available
P-1, P-1S, P-2, P-2S,
P-3, P-3S
Q-1 I-129Available
R-1 I-129Available
TN-1, TN-2 I-129Available
EAD: (c)(3)(A), (c)(3)(B), (c)(3)(B)I-765Available
F1, F2I-539Available
M1, M2I-539Available
J1, J2I-539Available
USCIS Nonimmigrant Visa Types and Premium Processing Availability
Immigrant Visa USCIS Form Availability Status
EB-1 I-140Available
EB-2 I-140Available
EB-3 I-140Available
USCIS Immigrant Visa Types and Premium Processing Availability

USCIS Premium Processing Contact Information

You can contact USCIS Customer Service at 866-315-5718 for premium processing questions. You can only contact this number after filing for premium processing. You will need to have your receipt number ready to get any support. If you are looking to order physical forms of I-907, then you can call I-800-375-5283.

How to check Premium Processing Case Status?

Once the Premium processing request is accepted, the petitioner (employer, attorney or representative) would get an email with USCIS receipt number and copy of the receipt notice. You can track the status online on USCIS Case Status website.

What does “Premium Processing Clock Was Stopped for My Case” mean?

USCIS has an SLA of 15 days or 30 days in some cases for their premium processing cases. If they need any additional information or they issue and RFE, they will update the online status to say “Premium Processing Clock Was Stopped for My Case“. All this means is that, from the date they update this status, they will not count towards the 15 days SLA.

Once you submit the documents or respond to the RFE, they will restart the premium processing clock. You may also see the message that says “15-day premium processing clock was stopped for my case”, both of these mean the same.

Below is a screenshot of how the status appears on the USCIS Case Status website.

Premium Processing Clock Was Stopped for My Case
Premium Processing Clock Was Stopped for My Case

Does USCIS Work on Weekends for Premium Processing?

USCIS Premium Processing time SLA is 15 calendar days for some visa types and 30 calendar days for some visa types. When they say calendar days, it means that it includes both weekdays and weekends. To meet the SLA, USCIS officers may work on weekends, but is not mandatory.

Based on past historical patterns, we have seen Case Status for premium processing cases getting updated on Weekends. So, we can assume that they may be working on weekends. But, it is not officially written anywhere that tells that they work on Weekends.

USCIS Premium Processing for I-130 Form? Expedite?

USCIS does not have premium processing available for the I-130 form, which is called as “Petition for Alien Relative”. Usually I-130 form is filed as part of the Family-based green card process. You cannot expedite the processing using an option like USCIS premium processing by paying certain fee.

As I-130 Form does not have premium processing, the only other option is to raise an Expedite Request with USCIS, if eligible for it. Usually, they would consider based on certain critical situations like urgent humanitarian need or anything is in the interest of US Govt.

Latest News on USCIS Premium Processing

  • February 26th, 2023: The new Premium processing fee is effective starting from Feb 26th, 2024. USCIS also release new form edition
  • December 27, 2023: USCIS increased the premium processing fee based on inflation, which will be effective from February 26, 2024. You can read more at USCIS Premium Processing Fee Increase from 2024
  • Oct-16-2020 : USCIS increased the premium processing fee to $2,500 starting from Oct 19, 2020. This is as per the signed law in early October for funding federal agencies. Read more at USCIS Premium processing fee is now $2500 for H1B, I-140
  • May-29-2020 : USCIS announced to resume premium processing from June 1st, in phases. Check Premium Processing Opens from June 1st, 2020 for full details.
  • March-20-2020 : USCIS suspends premium processing for all types of cases due to the COVID-19 situation. Check more at Premium Processing Suspended
  • March-16-2020 : USCIS announces temporary suspension of premium processing for FY 2021 cap subject petitions. Check USCIS alert

Common FAQs

Does USICIS Premium Processing Include Holidays?

Yes. The Service Level Agreement for Premium processing is 15 calendar days, it includes both holidays and weekends. Calendar days include all days in a week, irrespective of weekday or weekend, including holidays.

Will I-539 form along with I-129 be processed in Premium Processing?

No, I-539 form does not have premium Processing. But, USCIS has started to adjudicate the I-539 forms faster since the biometrics requirement has been removed, when they are filed together with an underlying I-129 form.

USCIS Premium Processing Check Payable to?

If paying for premium processing by check, you need to make it payable for “U.S. Department of Homeland Security”

When will H4 EAD and Other forms get premium processing option?

H4 EAD premium Processing is planned to be impleted during FY 2025. Read more at H4 EAD Premium Processing

Will USCIS return Premium Processing Fee?

If USCIS does not meet their 15 days deadline for Premium Processing, they would usually refund the fee related to premium processing and continue to adjudicate in premium processing. Just refunding the fee does not mean that they would not process in premium. There are some exceptions to this, when there is high load during start of H1B cap season or USCIS explicitly states issues like COVID situation.

Is USCIS Premium processing 15 calendar days or business days ?

It is calendar days, means it includes both working days and non-working days like holidays and weekends.

When will H4 EAD premium Processing Start?

There is not estimated date given by USCIS yet on when they will start H4 EAD premium processing. Congress passed a bill that instructs USCIS to implement premium processing for EAD, including H4 EAD. But, so far there is no regulation or any update on the same from USCIS. Currently, it is in USCIS list of things to do.


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