I must start this off with a disclaimer: I am not an attorney, and I have no official training in immigration law.
Recently I mounted my digital TV antenna to get it off a table, and when I got the TV to scan for all the channels, I ended up on something that turned into Korean programming later, including local news dubbed in Korean. I had kept the TV on in the background while working on other things.
I looked up at one point and saw that the new fee schedule from USCIS had been released. Some immigration filing fees had gone way, way up, and a few had gone down. Immediately my reaction was one of frustration. We were taught in school about how tolerant this country is, and if it weren’t so tolerant, the three grandparents of mine who weren’t born in this country probably wouldn’t have gotten in. And the one grandparent who was born here probably wouldn’t have been if they hadn’t let her parents in.
So I started to look more into the fee changes, and while I have issue with a lot of what’s in there, the one I have the biggest problem with is the fee for people seeking asylum.
The fee increased by $50.
You might think that that’s not nearly as bad as the $1230 fee increase (up 346% to $1585 from $355) for form N-470 Application to Preserve Residence for Naturalization Purposes, which OMG! But I think it’s dramatically worse.
The $50 increase for I-589 Application for Asylum and for Withholding
of Removal created a fee where there used to be none.
And it makes sense that there used to be no fee. If you’re running for your life and are doing whatever you can to get over the border, are you really going to have $50?
Now, this is going to be a new series because USCIS posted not just the new fees but the responses to questions about the public after the fees were proposed and before they went into effect.
I will be going through those and writing about them.