A federal judge in California blocked a Trump administration rule that would've hiked up naturalization fees by more than 80% and charged a first-time fee for asylum applicants, days before the regulation was set to take effect.
US Citizenship and Immigration Services, the agency responsible for the country's immigration and naturalization system, updated and finalized its fee structure after a nearly nine-month review earlier this year.
U.S. District Judge Jeffrey White granted a motion Tuesday that will stop U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services from imposing the fee changes that were expected to go into effect Friday. Though the ruling was made in California, the decision calls for the fees to be blocked across the country because of the various local and state governments that argued against the fee changes.
USCIS did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
However in another recent decision USCIS was permitted to re-institute the I-944 and the Trump Public Charge Rules that more aggressively target legal immigration by family members to the US.
With that said, the same decision that blocked the USCIS fee increase also created doubt that the any changes made by the Trump Administration since the resignation of Kristen Nielson in in April 2019 were not lawful as Trump failed to follow federal law in appointing her replacement Chad Wolf. Therefore all changes done by Chad Wold since early 2019 could well be found to be invalid as Chad Wolf was not actually lawfully in charge of the Department of Homeland Security when actions he worked on were ordered.