Foreign nationals who receive their immigrant visas will need to pay a fee to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) called the USCIS immigrant fee must be paid online through the USCIS ELIS (Electronic Immigration System). Immigrant visa recipients need to remember that they can get their green cards only after they pay this fee to USCIS. They will be allowed to travel to the U.S. as legal residents with their visas but will not be issued green cards until they pay this fee.
It is not mandatory to pay this fee prior to traveling to the U.S. Immigrants can pay the fee even after they arrive in the country. After USCIS verifies payment of the immigrant fee, the green card will be mailed to the address provided during the immigrant visa interviews.
The following steps will help our readers to pay their USCIS immigrant fee in USCIS ELIS.
Click here to learn how to create an online USCIS ELIS account.
- After creating an ELIS account, click on USCIS ELIS Home. This will direct to the online application page.
- Click the drop-down arrow and select “USCIS Immigrant Fee.”
- Select “Make Request/Payment.”
- Information about you - Enter name, date of birth, country of birth, Alien Registration Number, and DOS Case ID.
- People who want to pay the immigrant fee for their family members who are immigrating with them will need to select “Add Another Family Member” and click the “Next” button to proceed. Those who are paying the fee only for themselves can just click on "Next."
- On the following page, enter information about other family members (if applicable) and click “Enter.”
- Summary review – Check if all the information that has been entered is correct. If there are no errors, click “Next” to proceed or click “Back” to make changes.
- Payment – Here applicants must review the fee for themselves and for their family members, if any. They must enter the payment information that includes their names and their account numbers.
- Authorize payment – Applicants will then be directed to Pay.gov from the USCIS website. There they can pay the $165 immigrant fee with their debit or credit cards, electronic checks or prepaid cards like Visa gift cards. They will need to enter the required information and select “Continue with ACH Payment” or “Continue with Plastic Card Payment.” Before they authorize the payment, they can enter their email ids to request electronic fee payment receipts. Beside “CC”, they can the email ids of their family members for whom they are paying the fee. Followed by that, they can click the “Submit Payment” button.
The post was updated on October 14 to reflect changes in the USCIS ELIS immigrant fee payment guide.