Effective April 1, 2024, higher immigration fees took effect following a U.S. district court judge’s refusal to block a U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) fee rule. USCIS has primarily targeted employers sponsoring workers, with fee increases of 70% for H-1B petitions, 201% for L-1 petitions, and 129% for O-1 petitions, alongside a new $600 Asylum Program Fee and a raise in the H-1B Electronic Registration Fee from $10 to $215 per beneficiary. According to estimates by the National Foundation for American Policy, under the new rule, most companies may spend around $9,400 to petition for a first-time H-1B visa holder, with costs potentially rising to about $18,000 when including H-1B extensions. 

In Moody v. Mayorkas, a federal judge denied the plaintiffs’ motion for a temporary restraining order against USCIS, citing the high burden required for such an injunction. Despite this setback, the litigation continues, with plaintiffs aiming to challenge the fee rule’s compliance with federal law and seeking potential returns of already paid higher fees. The plaintiffs affirmed their commitment to the case, emphasizing their belief in the strength of their arguments against the fee rule and their determination to pursue legal action against USCIS.

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