From August 2010 to September 2015, there were additional H-1B and L-1 fees for companies applying for H-1B or L-1 visas if they employ over 50 full-time employees and over 50% of their current employees were in H-1B or L-1 status. On December 18, 2015, due to the 2016 fiscal budget, these additional fees are expected to rise from $2,250 to $4,500 for L-1 visas and from $2,000 to $4,000 for H-1B visas.

In addition, starting from December 21, 2015 the U.S. Embassy and consulates in Japan will impose a $4,500 fee for L-1 Blanket applicants in response to the new fiscal budget. This fee will be requested along with the $190 visa stamp issuance fee and the $500 fraud fee. If the applicant is required to pay this additional fee, they must check “yes” on both questions of the I-129S form Part 1, A and are required to pay this additional fee at their visa interview. L-2 visa applicants are not required to pay this fee.

Furthermore, this fee will also apply to both initial L-1 and L-1 extension petitions. However, this fee is only necessary should the sponsor company employ over 50 employees with over 50% of employees in L-1 or H-1B status. While this does not correspond to many cases, we predict that in the future there may be additional increases in visa application fees.