U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has announced the waiver of the biometric services fee for Form I-539, the Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status.
Starting on October 1, the $85 biometric services fee is no longer required as part of the application process for Form I-539. If your application is postmarked on or after October 1, you are exempt from paying this fee. However, for Form I-539 submissions made before October 1, certain applicants may still be scheduled for an ASC (Application Support Center) appointment and should attend as scheduled. In most cases, beginning October 1, applicants will not be scheduled for biometric services appointments. However, should USCIS determine the need for biometrics, applicants will be notified about their biometric services appointment.
If you accidentally submit the biometric services fee separately from the Form I-539 fee, we will refund the biometric services fee and accept the Form I-539. However, if you combine the biometric services fee with the paper-based Form I-539 filing fee, it will be considered an incorrect filing, and we will reject the Form I-539. If you inadvertently authorize a credit card payment combining the biometric services fee with the Form I-539 application fee, we will accept the application and only charge the application fee.
This exemption from the biometric services fee applies to all applicants filing on or after October 1, including those filing Form I-539 for an extension of stay or change of status to H-4, L-2, or E nonimmigrant status. USCIS had previously suspended the biometrics requirement for such applicants through September 30, 2023, as outlined in the USCIS Fiscal Year 2022 Progress Report. USCIS is committed to its goal of eliminating the biometric services fee and requirement for all Form I-539 applicants.