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USCIS proposes 83% hike in cost to become US citizen

Washington, Nov 15 (IANS) US President Donald Trump’s administration has officially proposed an 83 per cent increase in cost to become an American citizen, claiming that “current fees do not recover the full costs of providing adjudication and naturalization services”.

“The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) proposes to adjust certain immigration and naturalization benefit request fees charged by US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS),” Xinhua news agency quoted a DHS statement as saying.

The citizenship application fee would now increase from $640 to $1,170 while fees associated with legal permanent residency will go up by 79 per cent to $2,195, according to an ABC News report.

The proposed rule also outlines a series of other kinds of fee increases that impact immigration-related applications by asylum-seekers, Temporary Protected Status beneficiaries, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients and legal permanent residents, said the report.

The Trump administration also seeks to divert $207.6 million of USCIS funding to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), it added.

The proposal now enters a public comment period that’s expected to end on December 16, after which USCIS is legally obligated to consider comments before the new rule can take effect, according to the National Partnership for New Americans, a network of immigrant advocacy organizations.

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