NewsExpress advert Yudala banner
U.S. immigration fees jump, making it tougher for would-be Americans

By News Express on 26/12/2016

Share on facebook Yahoo mail icon Gmail icon Share on Google+

Views: 1,265


It just got considerably more expensive to be an immigrant seeking U.S. naturalisation.

For the first time since 2010, the Department of Homeland Security hiked a range of administrative fees for citizenship applications – in a few cases more than doubling the costs of key services. Any new petitions filed after Dec. 23 will not be accepted unless they include the higher fees.

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, the agency charged with handling immigrant applications, said in a statement the proceeds will help cover detecting fraud, processing cases and a range of other administrative costs, in what USCIS called a “weighted average” price hike of 21 percent.

Experts say the stiffer bureaucratic costs means the path to becoming an American could become a heavier burden for many cash-strapped would-be citizens. However, USCIS justified the price hike by arguing the agency was almost exclusively funded through the fees paid by petitioners, and needed the cash infusion.

Still, USCIS Director Leon Rodríguez said in a statement that the agency was “mindful of the effect fee increases have on many of the customers we serve,” which is why it waited so long to increase fees.

Peter Boogaard, a spokesperson for the Department of Homeland Security, told CNBC that along with the new fees, “USCIS will also offer a reduced filing fee for certain naturalisation applicants with limited means.”

Still, “these changes are now necessary to ensure USCIS can continue to serve its customers effectively,” he added.

The new pricing could have far-reaching implications for the vast number of immigrants that vie for U.S. citizenship on an annual basis. Each year, USCIS naturalises hundreds of thousands of new citizens.

Within the last decade, that number has swung between 537,000 and 1 million, data from the Migration Policy Institute showed, with nearly 7 million immigrants having become Americans during that time frame.

In New York alone, there are about 650,000 New Yorkers eligible for naturalisation.
Roughly 110,500 of them will become eligible for the new partial fee waiver, according to figures provided by the New York City Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs.

Glenn Martin Miller, an immigration attorney and adjunct professor at Pace University in New York, said the new fee hike will be a problem for some applicants, even with the reduced filing waivers.

“The percentage increased will be a burden for a family of two,” said Miller, citing guidelines that say an immigrant’s household income must be at or below 150 percent of the Federal Poverty Guideline to qualify for the program.

Nevertheless, history suggests that fee hikes result in a surge of applications, as thousands of potential applicants try to get ahead of the higher costs. Within the last year, more than 700,000 applications were filed, according to USCIS.

At least a few immigration advocates suggest the changing of the guard in the White House. President-elect Donald Trump won support in part because of his call for stricter immigration requirements, and stemming the flood of undocumented citizenship seekers flowing across the U.S.-Mexico border.

“It is hard to say whether that uptick is entirely caused by the upcoming fee increase or whether it is also caused by the anxiety of a Donald Trump presidency,” William Stock, president of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, told CNBC recently.

“There are a lot of people who have said that they want to become citizens as soon as possible,” he said, adding that lengthy backlogs for new cases were unlikely to be resolved by imposing higher fees on applicants.

“Adjudication backlogs are more than just an inconvenience, they have serious repercussions” for individuals waiting on job opportunities and their need for citizenship status, Miller said. (CNBC)

A cross section of citizens from around the world after taking an oath to officially become Americans at a brief ceremony run by the Department of Homeland Security. Photo: Andrew Lichtenstein/Corbis/Getty Images.

Source News Express

Posted 26/12/2016 2:41:10 PM

 

Share on facebook Yahoo mail icon Gmail icon Share on Google+


 

CLASSIFIED ADS

Loss Off Your Belly Fats, Upper Arm Fat and Body Fats In 2weeks Time.. Click HERE To Start Now!

Let us build the most comprehensive online database of worthy and credible Nigerians from all walks of life. It is worth doing!

 

You may also like...
Igbo leaders disown Biafra agitators

Osinbajo storms Mambilla on peace mission

Cloudy/hazy morning to give way to thunderstorms, sunny...

YIAGA commissions scholars for legislative, development research

Partnership with Tony Elumelu Foundation will lift creative...

Anambra youth group faults Adoke, EFCC and Obi...

Governor Wike a curse to Rivers State —APC...

PPMC tasks journalists to help fight pipelines vandalism...

MTN hires another senior banker

Oyo releases N600m for Conditional Grant Scheme

Militants blow up Chevron oil facility, vow more...

IDPs: Between immunity and impunity

 

Latest News Dana Airlines plane carrying 49 passengers runs into the bush Mastermind of Benue killings nabbed Champions League: Messi rescues Barca against Chelsea, Bayern hammer Besiktas Court seals Michael Okpara University over tax default NNPC spends $5.8bn on fuel imports in just a few months Demolition: Kaduna APC seeks removal of GOC, heads to court IPOB accuses FG of using delay tactics to keep members in prison Police confirms abduction of 3 by Boko Haram in Yobe Abia seeks presidential approval for Enyimba Industrial City Senate to investigate NNPC, NAOC secret bank account Global energy market forecast favours gas — Tony Attah Nigeria Computer Society holds ICT ‘Whizkids’ competition for secondary school students

 

Most Read Nigerian female sex addict opens up, says ‘I like it with both men and women’ (325,728 views) NUDE PHOTO OF OMOTOLA JALADE-EKEINDE surfaces online (317,304 views) Shameless Genevieve Nnaji exposes breasts in public (253,954 views) Finally named: The full list of friends of Nigerian female sex addict who prowled Facebook (208,367 views) Igbo scholar disgraces Femi Fani-Kayode •Demolishes claims on Igbo/Yoruba history with facts and figures (194,472 views) OLUMBA OLUMBA OBU (the one who called himself God) IS DEAD (187,313 views) Breaking News: POPULAR REVEREND CONVERTS TO ISLAM in Kaduna (Nigeria) (162,829 views) OBJ’s son reported dead in Lagos plane crash •Names of more victims emerge (146,187 views) THE FINAL DISGRACE: Igbo scholar unleashes more facts about Igbo/Yoruba history, finishes off Femi Fani-Kayode with second article (140,138 views) Lagos plane crash: Journalist releases victims’ names (129,209 views) My wasted years in Olumba Olumba Obu’s Evil Brotherhood (127,723 views) Gunmen kill ASP, 2 other police officers in vain bid to kidnap Rivers PDP chieftain (122,912 views)

 

Categories Advertorials (3) African Press Organisation (81) Art & Literature (34) Business (2,897) Business Verdict (33) Columnists (803) Complaints & Requests (94) Enterprise & Opportunities (203) Entertainment (446) Features (548) Global Business Monitor (226) International (1,798) Interviews (143) Live Commentary (28) Love Matters (105) News (32,985) Opinion (883) Pidgin (10) Politics (4,509) Religion (680) Sports (1,438) Stock Watch (27) AMA & Al Jazeera Global Update

 

 

Football president George Weah puts Liberian army to the test

 

APO Group Partner

 

CLASSIFIED ADS

Loss Off Your Belly Fats, Upper Arm Fat and Body Fats In 2weeks Time.. Click HERE To Start Now!

Let us build the most comprehensive online database of worthy and credible Nigerians from all walks of life. It is worth doing!

GOCOP Accredited Member

GOCOP Accredited member

 

 

Africa Media Agency and Al Jazeera

Advertisement