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Visa Processing Fees to Change on April 13, 2012

Effective April 13, 2012, the Department of State will adjust visa processing fees. The fees for most nonimmigrant visa applications and Border Crossing Cards will increase, while all immigrant visa processing fees will decrease.

The Department is required to recover, as far as possible, the cost of processing visas through the collection of application fees. For a number of reasons, the current fees no longer cover the actual cost of processing nonimmigrant visas. The nonimmigrant visa fee increase will support the addition and expansion of overseas facilities, as well as additional staffing required to meet increased visa demand.

Although most categories of nonimmigrant visa processing fees will increase, the fee for E visas (treaty-traders and treaty-investors) and K visas (for fiancé(e)s of U.S. citizens) will decrease.

Nonimmigrant Visa Processing Fees

Type of Visa

Previous Fee

New Fee

Tourist, Business, Transit, Crew Member, Student, Exchange Visitor, and Journalist visas



Petition-Based visas (H, L, O, P, Q, and R)



Treaty Investor and Trader visas (E)



Fiancé(e) visas (K)



Border Crossing Cards (age 15 and older)



Border Crossing Cards (under age 15)



Because of a reallocation of costs associated with immigrant visas, all categories of immigrant visa processing fees will decrease.

Immigrant Visa Processing Fees

Type of Visa

Previous Fee

New Fee

Immediate Relative and Family Preference Applications



Employment-Based Applications



Other Immigrant Visa Applications



Diversity Visa Program Fee



Determining Returning Resident Status



Applicants will be charged the fee in effect on the day of payment.  For fees that are increasing, receipts for payments made prior to the fee changes will be accepted for 90 days after the fee takes effect, or through July 12, 2012.  In categories where fees are declining, no refunds will be available for those who paid prior to the effective date; however, these receipts are valid for the usual one year from the date of issuance.

The proposed fees were published in the Federal Register today, and will take effect in 15 days.  To view the interim final rule, visit  Comments will be accepted until 60 days after publication.  At that time, the Department will consider the public comments, and the published final rule will include the Department’s response to any comments received.

Fee information may also be found on the Bureau of Consular Affairs website,, and on the websites of U.S. embassies and consulates.

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