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USCIS Immigrant Fee

If you are immigrating to the United States as a lawful permanent resident, you must pay the $165 USCIS Immigrant Fee unless you meet one of the exemptions.

USCIS uses this fee to process your immigrant visa packet and produce and deliver your Permanent Resident Card (commonly known as a Green Card).

Once you receive your immigrant visa packet from a U.S. embassy or consulate, we strongly encourage you to pay the fee before you depart for the United States.

You may also pay the fee for any family members who will live with you in the United States. You must pay the fee online using USCIS ELIS, the USCIS Electronic Immigration System. We will send your Green Card to you after you pay the fee and travel to the United States.

You may also pay the fee after you arrive in the United States. If you arrive in the United States and haven’t paid the fee yet, USCIS will send you a request for payment with instructions on paying your fee. You will not receive your Green Card until you have paid the USCIS Immigrant Fee.

Accessing USCIS ELIS

You can use the following Internet browsers to access USCIS ELIS:

  • Microsoft Internet Explorer versions 7 through 9; and
  • Mozilla Firefox versions 3 and 4.

USCIS plans to support additional browsers in the future. You cannot access USCIS ELIS using your phone because it currently does not support mobile access.

Creating a USCIS ELIS Online Account

To create a USCIS ELIS online account, visit the USCIS ELIS home page. For a step-by-step video on how to create a USCIS ELIS online account, please see Establishing Online Access: USCIS ELIS Video.

Parents of a child younger than age 14 may create an account and pay the USCIS Immigrant Fee for their child. Additionally, a legal guardian for a developmentally or mentally disabled individual may create an account and pay the USCIS Immigrant Fee for that individual.

Paying the Fee

Log in or create a new account in USCIS ELIS. Once you log in, select USCIS Immigrant Fee from the drop-down menu.

You will need your Alien Registration Number (A-Number) and U.S. Department of State (DOS) Case ID to pay the fee. You can find Tips on Finding Your A-Number and DOS Case ID on our website. You may pay the fee for yourself and any family members who will live with you in the United States.

Note: Attorneys, accredited representatives and employers are not authorized to create a USCIS ELIS account on your behalf to pay the USCIS Immigrant Fee. Only you may create a USCIS ELIS account to pay the fee to obtain your Green Card.


New Immigrant


Process for Paying

Your USCIS Immigrant Fee


Receive your immigrant information

  • The U.S. embassy or consulate will give you your:
    • A-Number (the letter “A” followed by 8 or 9 numbers);
    • DOS Case ID (3 letters followed by 9 or 10 numbers); and
    • Sealed immigrant visa packet.
Person Using A Computer

Create an online USCIS ELIS account

  • Go to
  • Follow the directions to create an online account.
  • Select “USCIS Immigrant Fee” and include your personal information.
Paying a Fee Online

Pay USCIS Immigrant Fee

  • Pay $165 online.  If you are paying for family members who will reside with you in the United States, you may pay all fees in one transaction.
  • Provide valid payment information. You must pay either with a valid credit or debit card or provide your bank routing and checking account numbers to have money taken directly from your U.S. bank account.
United States of AmericaTravel to USA
Immigrant at Port of Entry

Arrive with immigrant visa packet at a port of entry

  • You are admitted to the United States as a lawful permanent resident.
Immigrant with Green Card

Receive Green Card

  • After you are admitted to the United States, USCIS will:
    • Verify that you paid the USCIS Immigrant Fee; and
    • Mail your Green Card to the address you provided to DOS at the time of your immigrant visa interview or to U.S. Customs and Border Protection at the time you arrived in the United States.

For more information, read the "How Do I ...Pay the USCIS Immigrant Fee" customer guide, available in EnglishChinese (Mandarin) , French, Hindi, Korean, PortugueseTagalog, Urdu and Vietnamese.

You can find step-by-step instructions in English and Spanish in the “USCIS ELIS Immigrant Fee Payment Guide.”

Failure to Pay

USCIS will not send you a Green Card until we receive your $165 Immigrant Fee payment. If you fail to pay your fee, USCIS will send you a notice requesting payment.

If you do not pay the fee within the time listed in the notice, you will not receive your Green Card. However, failure to pay the USCIS Immigrant Fee will not affect your status as a lawful permanent resident. 


The following groups do not have to pay the USCIS Immigrant Fee:

  • Children who enter the United States under the orphan or Hague adoption programs;
  • Iraqi and Afghan special immigrants;
  • Returning lawful permanent residents (SB-1s); and
  • K nonimmigrants.

Payment methods

To pay a fee, you can use a:

  • Credit card;
  • Debit card;
  • Pre-paid debit card (such as a Visa gift card);
    • If you pay with a pre-paid debit card, you may use only one card. The card must have enough money on it to pay for you and any family members.


  • U.S. bank account (also known as an Automated Clearing House (ACH) payment).
    • To pay with a U.S. bank account, you must provide a checking account number and routing number for your U.S. bank.

Case status

You can find the current status of your USCIS ELIS case by logging into your account and selecting the link for your USCIS Immigrant Fee payment. You will then be taken to the case status page. You can find your current status at the top right corner of the page.

USCIS Numbers to Remember

You should keep a record of your USCIS ELIS Account ID and Receipt ID. Your USCIS ELIS Account ID is a 12-digit number unique to your USCIS ELIS online account. You will not receive a USCIS ELIS Account ID until you pay the USCIS Immigrant Fee.

If you have already paid the USCIS Immigrant Fee, you can locate your USCIS ELIS Account ID by following the steps below:

  • Log in to your USCIS ELIS online account;
  • Select the “View My Profile” button; and
  • Select the “Account” tab on the Account Information screen.

Your Receipt ID is a unique number that applies to your specific case with USCIS. You can find your Receipt ID on your case receipt notice; it begins with the letters “IOE.”

If you did not receive a copy of your USCIS case receipt notice and would like a copy for your records, you may view and print a copy from your USCIS ELIS online account. After you log in to your account, select the "View Messages" tab to view or print your official case receipt confirmation from USCIS.


  • Log in problems: If you forgot your USCIS ELIS online account password or security questions, go to the USCIS ELIS login screen and select the “Forgot or Need to Reset Your Password?” link. You will need to answer the security questions that you selected when you created your account. We will then send a message to the email address associated with your account with instructions on how to reset your password.

If you have forgotten or need to reset the answers to your security questions, or if you continue to experience difficulties, please submit our online help form for assistance.

  • Missing Green Card: If you do not receive your Green Card within 45 days after paying the USCIS Immigrant Fee, please submit our online help form to request assistance. Please make sure your mailing address is correct. You can update your mailing address in USCIS ELIS under the “View My Profile” section on the main menu. You must also complete a USCIS Form AR-11, Change of Address. To learn more about the AR-11, Change of Address process

About the Fee

On Sept. 24, 2010, the Federal Register published the USCIS final rule establishing the USCIS Immigrant Fee.  The rule became effective for all foreign nationals who receive an immigrant visa on or after Feb. 1, 2013. The USCIS Immigrant Fee is not related to the immigrant visa application fees collected by DOS.

Burden Disclosure Notice: OMB Control Number 1615-0122. 

USCIS Privacy Act Statement

How to Contact USCIS

If you have any questions about paying the fee, or if you accidentally paid twice or otherwise feel you paid the USCIS Immigrant Fee in error, you can:

  • Submit a Contact Us form;
  • Call (if you are in the United States) the USCIS Customer Service Center toll-free at 1-800-375-5283 or 1-800-767-1833 (TDD for hearing-impaired); or
  • Schedule an InfoPass appointment to meet with a USCIS officer.




Last Reviewed/Updated: 06/30/2015