[Federal Register Volume 84, Number 66 (Friday, April 5, 2019)]
[Pages 13687-13688]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2019-06657]



U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services

[OMB Control Number 1615-0116]

Agency Information Collection Activities; Revision of a Currently 
Approved Collection: Request for Fee Waiver

AGENCY: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Department of 
Homeland Security.

ACTION: 30-Day notice.


SUMMARY: The Department of Homeland Security (DHS), U.S. Citizenship 
and Immigration Services (USCIS) will be submitting the following 
information collection request to the Office of Management and Budget 
(OMB) for review and clearance in accordance with the Paperwork 
Reduction Act of 1995. The purpose of this notice is to allow an 
additional 30 days for public comments.

DATES: The purpose of this notice is to allow an additional 30 days for 
public comments. Comments are encouraged and will be accepted until May 
6, 2019.

ADDRESSES: Written comments and/or suggestions regarding the item(s) 
contained in this notice, especially regarding the estimated public 
burden and associated response time, must be directed to the OMB USCIS 
Desk Officer via email at [email protected]. All submissions 
received must include the agency name and the OMB Control Number 1615-
0116 in the subject line.
    You may wish to consider limiting the amount of personal 
information that you provide in any voluntary submission you make. For 
additional information please read the Privacy Act notice that is 
available via the link in the footer of http://www.regulations.gov.

Regulatory Coordination Division, Samantha Deshommes, Chief, 20 
Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20529-2140, Telephone number 
(202) 272-8377. (This is not a toll-free number; comments are not 
accepted via telephone message). Please note contact information 
provided here is solely for questions regarding this notice. It is not 
for individual case status inquiries. Applicants seeking information 
about the status of their individual cases can check Case Status 
Online, available at the USCIS website at http://www.uscis.gov, or call 
the USCIS National Customer Service Center at (800) 375-5283; TTY (800) 


Reason for Changes

    USCIS is primarily funded by application and petition fees. Under 
INA 286(m), 8 U.S.C. 1356(m), DHS has the authority to establish the 
fees it charges for immigration and naturalization services to recover 
the full costs of such services, including those provided without 
charge, and to recover costs associated with the administration of the 
fees collected. Therefore, the fees are set at a level that is intended 
to recover the full cost of USCIS operations. USCIS may waive the fee 
for certain immigration benefit requests when the individual requesting 
the benefit is unable to pay the fee. See 8 CFR 103.7(c). To request a 
fee waiver, the individual must submit a written waiver request for 
permission to have their benefit request processed without payment. The 
waiver request must state the person's belief that he or she is 
entitled to or deserving of the benefit requested and the reasons for 
his or her inability to pay and include evidence to support the reasons 
indicated. See 8 CFR 103.7(c)(2).
    The proposed revision would reduce the evidence required for a fee 
waiver to only a person's household income and no longer require proof 
of whether or not an individual receives a means-tested benefit. USCIS 
policy since 2011 has been to permit a fee waiver where an applicant 
received a means-tested benefit, even for a short period of time. USCIS 
has found that the various income levels used in states to grant a 
means-tested benefit result in inconsistent income levels being used to 
determine eligibility for a fee waiver. Consequently, a fee waiver may 
be granted for one person who has a certain level of income in one 
state, but denied for a person with that same income who lives in 
another state. Therefore, USCIS has determined that fee waivers should 
not be based on the receipt of a means tested benefit, and the revised 
form will not permit a fee waiver based on receipt of a means-tested 
benefit. It will retain the poverty-guideline threshold and financial 
hardship criteria. USCIS requested public comments on the revised form 
and policy and is proceeding with the form revision after considering 
the public comments. Therefore, USCIS will rescind Policy Memorandum, 
PM-602-0011.1, Fee Waiver Guidelines as Established by the Final Rule 
of the USCIS Fee Schedule; Revisions to Adjudicator's Field Manual 
(AFM) Chapter 10.9, AFM Update AD11-26 (Mar. 13, 2011) and issue new 
guidance on the documentation acceptable for individuals to present to 
demonstrate that they are unable to pay a fee when requesting a fee 
waiver. The applications and petitions that are eligible for a fee 
waiver are provided in 8 CFR 103.7(c)(3) and will not be changed by 
this form and policy change.


    The information collection notice was previously published in the 
Federal Register on September 28, 2018, at 83 FR 49120, allowing for a 
60-day public comment period. USCIS did receive 1,198 comments in 
connection with the 60-day notice.

[[Page 13688]]

    You may access the information collection instrument with 
instructions, or additional information by visiting the Federal 
eRulemaking Portal site at: http://www.regulations.gov and enter USCIS-
2010-0008 in the search box. Written comments and suggestions from the 
public and affected agencies should address one or more of the 
following four points:
    (1) Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is 
necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, 
including whether the information will have practical utility;
    (2) Evaluate the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of 
the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the 
methodology and assumptions used;
    (3) Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to 
be collected; and
    (4) Minimize the burden of the collection of information on those 
who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, 
electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or 
other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic 
submission of responses.

Overview of This Information Collection

    (1) Type of Information Collection Request: Revision of a Currently 
Approved Collection.
    (2) Title of the Form/Collection: Request for Fee Waiver.
    (3) Agency form number, if any, and the applicable component of the 
DHS sponsoring the collection: I-912; USCIS.
    (4) Affected public who will be asked or required to respond, as 
well as a brief abstract:
    Primary: Individuals or households. USCIS uses the data collected 
on this form to verify that the applicant is unable to pay for the 
immigration benefit being requested. USCIS will consider waiving a fee 
for an application or petition when the applicant or petitioner clearly 
demonstrates that he or she is unable to pay the fee. Form I-912 
standardizes the collection and analysis of statements and supporting 
documentation provided by the applicant with the fee waiver request. 
Form I-912 also streamlines and expedites USCIS's review, approval, or 
denial of the fee waiver request by clearly laying out the most salient 
data and evidence necessary for the determination of inability to pay. 
Officers evaluate all factors, circumstances, and evidence supplied in 
support of a fee waiver request when making a final determination. Each 
case is unique and is considered on its own merits. If the fee waiver 
is granted, the application will be processed. If the fee waiver is not 
granted, USCIS will notify the applicant and instruct him or her to 
file a new application with the appropriate fee.
    (5) An estimate of the total number of respondents and the amount 
of time estimated for an average respondent to respond: The estimated 
total number of respondents for the information collection I-912 is 
350,000 and the estimated hour burden per response is 1.17 hours; for 
the information collection DACA Exemptions the estimated total number 
of respondents is 108 and the estimated hour burden per response is 
1.17 hours; for the information collection 8 CFR 103.7(d) Director's 
exception request the estimated total number of respondents is 20 and 
the estimated hour burden per response is 1.17 hours.
    (6) An estimate of the total public burden (in hours) associated 
with the collection: The total estimated annual hour burden associated 
with this collection is 409,650 hours.
    (7) An estimate of the total public burden (in cost) associated 
with the collection: The estimated total annual cost burden associated 
with this collection of information is $1,312,980.

    Dated: March 29, 2019.
Samantha L. Deshommes,
Chief, Regulatory Coordination Division, Office of Policy and Strategy, 
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Department of Homeland 
[FR Doc. 2019-06657 Filed 4-4-19; 8:45 am]