The U.S. State Department announced this week that visa application fees at consular posts abroad will increase on June 4, 2010. The current fee of $131 has been in effect since January 1, 2008 and applies to all visa categories. According to the State Department, security enhancements and processing costs have increased, such that it now will charge different application fees depending upon the visa category. The new fees will range from $140 to $390.

Common employment-related visas that the change will impact are the H-1B, L-1A, L-1B, E-1 and E-2 categories. The application fee for H-1B (specialty occupation workers) and L-1 (intracompany transferees) will increase to $150. The fee for E-1 (treaty traders) and E-2 (treaty investors) will be $390. Employers and employees therefore can plan now for the increased fees for visa applications at U.S. consulates abroad beginning June 4.

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