AILA Public Statements, Press Releases

AILA Responds to New Biden Administration Rules on Fees and H-1B Registration Process

Washington, DC – The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) responded to the advance copies shared publicly by the Biden Administration regarding U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) fees and a revised H-1B visa registration process:

AILA President Farshad Owji stated, “It has been clear for some time that the USCIS fee-funded model is no longer sustainable. For years, Congress has failed to provide the resources needed to address both the increasing humanitarian workload and the efforts to reduce backlogs. Under the current user-funded model, the agency is left with no sustainable options, leading to placing larger burdens on businesses, which will hamper them as they compete for top talent. While AILA applauds USCIS for their commitment to providing humanitarian relief at little cost to those applicants, these fee increases are significant and create a huge burden on stakeholders. USCIS must use the additional revenue to reduce processing times by streamlining adjudications and leveraging technology. We also urge the agency to utilize fee waivers as generously as possible, ensuring that those with fewer resources have the same meaningful chance at obtaining immigration benefits.”

AILA’s Director of Government Relations Sharvari Dalal-Dheini stated, “The new H-1B registration process shared today will revise how the lottery registration is run and create a more equitable system. After last year's registration period, when more than 750,000 registrations were submitted for 85,000 visas, it was clear that the existing system was unworkable. AILA and our partners advocated for exactly the sort of changes announced in this rule; changes that will ensure a beneficiary-centric lottery process to level the playing field. It is commendable that DHS took steps to shift from a flawed model to one that will create a fairer system in time for this year’s registration period.”