USCIS Updates Fee Payment System Used in Field Offices
Changes will increase transaction security and reduce processing errors
WASHINGTON — On Feb. 25, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) expanded the fee payment system used in field offices to 13 additional offices:
- Albuquerque, New Mexico;
- Buffalo, New York;
- Detroit, Michigan;
- El Paso, Texas;
- Harlingen, Texas;
- Hartford, Connecticut;
- Jacksonville, Florida;
- Louisville, Kentucky;
- Mt. Laurel, New Jersey;
- Newark, New Jersey;
- Raleigh, North Carolina;
- Sacramento, California; and
- San Antonio, Texas.
Our fee payment changes started in November 2018 with the Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, San Bernardino, Santa Ana, and San Fernando Valley field offices. These changes have increased security and traceability of payments for applicants.
As of Feb. 25, we will only accept payments at the offices using the new system in the form of a:
- Personal check;
- Attorney check;
- Business check;
- Debit card;
- Credit card; or
- Reloadable prepaid credit or debit card.
Early results indicate that the update to the fee payment system reduced processing time by 88 percent and reduced the overall applicant service wait time by 75 percent while giving USCIS field officers greater capacity to complete their cases more quickly.
This internal transition is part of the agency’s ongoing efforts to modernize our business practices, allowing USCIS field office staff to process applicants’ payments in a quicker, more secure online system.
We will inform anyone who has made an appointment at these field offices that we will not accept money orders or cashier’s checks for in-person fee payments. Additionally, we will update rejection notices to alert applicants who have mailed in their fees to the above offices after Feb.25 to explain that we no longer accept these payment methods, and the payment will be returned to the applicant at that time.
We anticipate expanding the program to all remaining field offices by the end of fiscal year 2019. Local field offices will announce the expansion in their respective area with a local news release.