USCIS will no longer accept Premium Processing
Service (PPS) filings for any H-1B petition, starting April 3, 2017. USCIS says that the suspension could last for
6 months. PPS will not be available for
H-1B cap cases, H-1B cap-exempt cases, H-1B extensions, H-1B amendments, or any
other type of H-1B petition.
USCIS claims that by suspending the
PPS program for H-1B petitions, it will help
them reduce overall H-1B processing times.
USCIS Will Temporarily Suspend Premium
Processing for All H-1B Petitions
April 3, 2017, USCIS will temporarily suspend premium processing for all H-1B
petitions. This suspension may last up to 6 months. While H-1B premium
processing is suspended, petitioners will not be able to file Form I-907,
Request for Premium Processing Service for a Form I-129, Petition for a
Nonimmigrant Worker which requests the H-1B nonimmigrant classification. We
will notify the public before resuming premium processing for H-1B petitions.
Who Is Affected
The temporary suspension applies to all H-1B petitions filed on or after
April 3, 2017. Since FY18 cap-subject H-1B petitions cannot be filed before
April 3, 2017, this suspension will apply to all petitions filed for the FY18
H-1B regular cap and master’s advanced degree cap exemption (the “master’s
cap”). The suspension also applies to petitions that may be cap-exempt.
While premium processing is suspended, we will reject any Form I-907 filed
with an H-1B petition. If the petitioner submits one combined check for both
the Form I-907 and Form I-129 H-1B fees, we will have to reject both forms.
We will continue to premium process Form I-129 H-1B petitions if the
petitioner properly filed an associated Form I-907 before April 3, 2017.
Therefore, we will refund the premium processing fee if:
- The petitioner filed the Form I-907 for an H-1B
petition before April 3, 2017, and
- We did not take adjudicative action on the case within
the 15-calendar-day processing period.
This temporary suspension of premium processing does not apply to other
eligible nonimmigrant classifications filed on Form I-129.
While premium processing is suspended, petitioners may submit a request to
expedite an H-1B petition if they meet the criteria on the Expedite
webpage. It is the petitioner’s responsibility to demonstrate
that they meet at least one of the expedite criteria, and we encourage
petitioners to submit documentary evidence to support their expedite request.
We review all expedite requests on a case-by-case basis and requests are
granted at the discretion of the office leadership.
Why We Are
Temporarily Suspending Premium Processing for H-1B Petitions
This temporary suspension will help us to reduce overall H-1B processing
times. By temporarily suspending premium processing, we will be able to:
- Process long-pending petitions, which we have currently
been unable to process due to the high volume of incoming petitions and
the significant surge in premium processing requests over the past few
- Prioritize adjudication of H-1B extension of status
cases that are nearing the 240 day mark.