Manan Mehta of Unshackled Ventures, which helps immigrants found companies, had a more-positive outlook. He said given that people on H-1B and other specialized visas often earned high salaries, the fee hikes for visa applications could just be factored into that overall cost.

The timing of it all is what presents a challenge, given the state of the economy. Additionally, lawyers are skeptical that the USCIS would be able to turn things around and fix broken systems with the additional money it would be bringing in.

“I just don’t see how this breaks the vicious cycle that we’re in right now,” Anver of Erickson Immigration Group said.