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Notice

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

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Document Details

Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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This document has been published in the Federal Register. Use the PDF linked in the document sidebar for the official electronic format.

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AGENCY:

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

ACTION:

60-Day notice.

SUMMARY:

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS), U.S. Citizenship and Immigration

(USCIS) invites the general public and other Federal agencies to comment upon this proposed revision of a currently approved collection of information. In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) of 1995, the information collection notice is published in the Federal Register to obtain comments regarding the nature of the information collection, the categories of respondents, the estimated burden (i.e., the time, effort, and resources used by the respondents to respond), the estimated cost to the respondent, and the actual information collection instruments.

DATES:

Comments are encouraged and will be accepted for 60 days until November 27, 2018.

ADDRESSES:

All submissions received must include the OMB Control Number 1615-0116 in the body of the letter, the agency name and Docket ID USCIS-2010-0008. To avoid duplicate submissions, please use only one of the following methods to submit comments:

(1) Online. Submit comments via the Federal eRulemaking Portal website at http://www.regulations.gov undere-Docket ID number USCIS-2010-0008;

(2) Mail. Submit written comments to DHS, USCIS, Office of Policy and Strategy, Chief, Regulatory Coordination Division, 20 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20529-2140.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

USCIS, Office of Policy and Strategy, Regulatory Coordination Division, Samantha Deshommes, Chief, 20 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Start Printed Page 49121Washington, 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 800-767-1833).

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Reason for Changes

USCIS is permitted by regulations to waive certain fees provided the party requesting the benefit is unable to pay the prescribed fee. The proposed revision would reduce the evidence required for Form I-912 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. Therefore, the revised form will not permit a fee waiver based on receipt of a means- tested benefit, but will retain the poverty-guideline threshold and financial hardship criteria. If USCIS decides to proceed with the form revision after considering public comments, 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.

Comments

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. Regardless of the method used for submitting comments or material, all submissions will be posted, without change, to the Federal eRulemaking Portal at http://www.regulations.gov, and will include any personal information you provide. Therefore, submitting this information makes it public. You may wish to consider limiting the amount of personal information that you provide in any voluntary submission you make to DHS. DHS may withhold information provided in comments from public viewing that it determines may impact the privacy of an individual or is offensive. For additional information, please read the Privacy Act notice that is available via the link in the footer of http://www.regulations.gov.

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: 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.

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Dated: September 24, 2018.

Samantha L. Deshommes,

Chief, Regulatory Coordination Division, Office of Policy and Strategy, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Department of Homeland Security.

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[FR Doc. 2018-21101 Filed 9-27-18; 8:45 am]

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