U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced today that the Premium Processing service, which reduces the processing time for certain petitions and applications, will be available to F-1 students. Premium Processing is available immediately for F-1 students whose Form I-765 Employment Authorization Document (EAD) applications have been filed with the USCIS and are currently pending. Premium Processing will be available for F-1 students for newly filed I-765 EAD applications on April 3, 2023.
As we reported in our Alert on January 12, 2023, the USCIS had previously announced its intention to expand the Premium Processing service to I-765 applications filed by F-1 students. As of today, F-1 students whose I-765 applications are pending with the USCIS may file Form I-907 and its accompanying filing fee to request that the pending I-765 application be processed under Premium Processing. Form I-907 may be filed by mail with a hard copy or electronically online. On April 3, 2023, USCIS will also start accepting Form I-907 requesting Premium Processing concurrently with I-765 applications filed by F-1 students requesting Optional Practical Training (OPT).
To be eligible to request for Premium Processing, F-1 students must be applying for OPT under one of these categories:
- (c)(3)(A) – Pre-Completion OPT
- (c)(3)(B) – Post-Completion OPT
- (c)(3)(C) – 24-Month Extension of OPT for STEM students.
The fee for Premium Processing a pending I-765 application in any of the above-listed categories is $1,500. Once a request for Premium Processing is accepted, USCIS will take adjudicative action on the case within 30 calendar days for a Form I-765 in these categories. If USCIS is unable to take action within the 30-day period, the Premium Processing fee will be refunded.