September 2022 – A few months ago we were talking in this blog about how USCIS was aiming for an expansion of Premium Processing to categories of green card that did not have this option. EB-2 NIW (National Interest Waiver) falls in this category.
Last week, on September 15, USCIS moved to the next phase of this staggered approach and announced that more applicants are eligible for this expedited processing.
Specifically, the official website states that applicants of EB-2 NIW I-140 forms can request Premium Processing if they submitted their application on or before February 1st, 2022. This is great news because the previous phase was not as generous in the number of people affected.
How to request Premium Processing for EB2 NIW
Those who qualify for this option can submit a request using form I-907. The fee for the premium processing of EB-2 green card is $2,500 as of today (September 2022). Of course, this is optional and nobody is forced to take this decision. In addition, USCIS has promised that the availability of premium processing will not hurt those who choose not to use this route. In other words, USCIS should have enough resources to fulfill the request for expedited processing while not slowing down the regular processing.
How fast is Premium Processing for EB2 NIW
The Premium Processing option for EB-2 NIW allows applicants to obtain a decision on their I-140 petition within 45 calendar days. This is longer than Premium Processing available for other visa categories, such as H-1B, which is 15 calendar days. However, it is a big improvement over the typical wait of months to receive an answer from USCIS.
When will USCIS finish its implementation of Premium Processing for EB2 NIW?
This is excellent news for the EB2 NIW applicants but many may wonder when will Premium Processing be available for all petitioners. While USCIS has not given specific dates, given the speed at which the phased program is moving, it is not unreasonable to think that it will only take one or two more phases. This could mean that Premium Processing may be available to all EB2 NIW petitioners as early as 2023. However, this is just my speculation after observing their decisions in the last months. We will keep an eye on the official news and share them with you when they become available.