USCIS, or immigration, uses a 3 step process to decide whether they will allow you waive your fees and file for free:
Whether you get certain public benefits such as SNAP (food stamps) or Supplemental Security Income. If you receive certain public benefits your fee waiver will usually be approved. You will need to send in documentation that proves that you receive the benefits. This is usually an official letter from the agency giving you the benefit.
- If your household income is 150% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines. If your income is at or under that amount, your fee waiver will usually be approved. You will need to send proof of your income. A copy of your most recent Federal tax return is best.
- If you have a financial hardship. If you are recently unemployed, have high medical costs, or other large expenses you may qualify. You will need to provide evidence if you want a waiver based on this reason. This includes things like bills or receipts.
Filing immigration fee waivers online
You cannot file these fee waivers online currently. Fee waivers must be completed on a paper application.
Immigration rejected my fee waiver application
If USCIS (immigration) rejects your request to file for free, it will return your application to you. You will need to reapply and pay the fee.