US Expands Premium Processing Service for Employment Authorization to Foreign Students


Cyril Zachariah
Updated on Mar 07, 2023 11:33 AM IST

USCIS has recently announced another expansion of its premium processing service for work authorisation to also include select F-1 students. Starting March 6, the process now includes F-1 students with pending work authorisation, to request premium processing service, while, starting April 3, select students will be able to request premium processing with their employment authorisation request.

US Expands Premium Processing Service for Employment Authorization to Foreign Students

In another move favouring the international student cohorts in the country, the US has recently announced the immigrant categories that can apply for the premium processing of work authorisation.

According to new reports, the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) amended the list to include select F-1 students to apply for the premium processing services. The reports revealed that F-1 students seeking Optional Practical Training (OPT) or STEM OPT extensions, who also have pending FORM I-765 (Application for Employment Authorisation), will be able to request the premium processing.

Those interested in the premium processing can apply for the same since the application began on March 6, 2023. The press release stated that select categories will be able to apply for the same from 3rd April this year.

Also Read: USA Deploys Officials from ‘All Around the World’ to Assist with India Visa Operations

In its statement, the USCIS affirmed the move as an effort to reduce the overall burden that the immigration system is facing. It further added that the processes will be “implemented in a phased approach”.

USCIS Director Ur M. Jaddou stated that the offer of premium processing for select F-1 students will help streamline the immigration experience for a large portion of the international student cohort.

He also revealed that this expansion of online filing is a priority for USCIS since the department is dedicated to improving the “operational efficiencies and increase access to the immigration system for stakeholders, applicants, petitioners, requestors and more.

As per the press release, the new online-filing process for Form I-907 (Request for Premium Processing Service), has now been made available to eligible F-1 students. The process is set to be carried out in phases for the eligible students.

However, interested candidates need to follow the guidelines, outlined here as confirmed by the press release. Starting March 6, those with a pending Form I-765 will be able to apply for Form I-907. In addition to this, the eligible candidates should also be applying under one of the following categories:

  • (c)(3)(A) – Pre-Completion OPT;

  • (c)(3)(B) – Post-Completion OPT; and

  • (c)(3)(C) – 24-Month Extension of OPT for STEM students.

Interested candidates filing a new Form I-765 should also fill up and submit Form I-907 along with Form I-765 to access the premium processing service starting April 3, 2023. Students qualifying under this category should also fall under the categories mentioned above.

Also Read: Students Can Now Apply for USA Student Visa a Year Before Their Course Begins

The expansion to include select F-1 students comes after the Biden administration previously expanded the service to include select green card applicants and some other visa categories, specifically foreign student training as well.

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Source: Economic Times

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