(Policy): Fee Hike Alert: United States Citizenship and Immigration Services Increase and Its Impact on H-2A Visas.

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Andrea Hernandez-Rodriguez

Mar 20, 2024, 9:46:11 AMMar 20
to Pasa Community Board

Back in January 2023, USCIS had introduced a plan that brought about significant raises in immigration petitions and filing costs, including the fees required for H-2A visas for temporary and seasonal farmworkers. Within this 2023 proposal, the filing fee for an H-2A petition was expected to soar from $460 to $1,090, marking an eye-opening 137% surge. 

Now, a little over a year later, on January 31, 2024, USCIS and Department of Homeland and Security finally published their final rule and unfortunately proceeded with these substantial fee hikes affecting the H-2A program effective April 1, 2024.

Along with the raised filing fees, there was an introduction of a new Asylum Program Fee of $600 for specific forms submitted by employers, including Form I-29, impacting the expenses associated with H-1B visas. The fee will be: $0 for nonprofits; $300 for small employers and $600 for all other filers.

The table below illustrates that fee increases:

Current Fee(s)

Final Fee(s)

Current to Final Difference

H-2A Named Beneficiaries





H-2A Named Beneficiaries (small employers and non-profits)





H-2A Unnamed Beneficiaries





H-2A Unnamed Beneficiaries (small employers and non-profits)




Note: small employers are defined as firms or operations with 25 or fewer FTE employees

It's crucial to recognize the valuable input from various organizations, including Pasa's, regarding the proposed fee hike. Last year, Pasa raised concerns about these increases, emphasizing the need for a thorough examination of its detrimental impact. For those interested in delving deeper, it's worth revisiting Pasa's public comments linked below, which offered alternative solutions.

What’s Next?

Looking ahead, Pasa is committed to connecting with farmer members who rely on the H2-A program to understand how this fee hike might affect their day-to-day operations. This proactive approach aims to gather firsthand experiences and propose practical adjustments. We warmly invite you to join the conversation by sharing your thoughts and concerns with us.

You can reach us via phone at (814) 349-9845 x757 or email at: pol...@pasafarming.org.

Your input is invaluable and will shape our collective response. Let's work together to ensure our voices are heard and our interests represented.


Pasa's Policy Team


Andrea Hernandez-Rodriguez | Policy Fellow | Pasa Sustainable Agriculture


814.349.9856 x757

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H2A comments - Pasa.pdf
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