In 2020, U.S. Department of Homeland Security implemented a regulation designed to manage the process of selecting cases for adjudication under the annual “cap” on H-1B filings. After a successful launch last year, USCIS will continue with the same “pre-registration” process for cap-subject H-1B’s for the upcoming fiscal year.
In previous years, employers filing cap-subject H-1B’s were required to file a complete Petition for Non-Immigration Worker, accompanying documents and filing fee for any H-1B worker they sought to sponsor. However, by reason of the statutory limit or “cap” on the number of H-1B’s available each year, most timely-filed Petitions would be sent back to employers, causing tremendous disappointment for workers, as well as wasted time and expense for employers.
The registration system eliminates this unnecessary effort and expense by replacing the old system, which required employers to prepare large numbers of bulky H-1B Petitions only to have them rejected, with a new system which pre-selects the cases accepted under the lottery so that, following pre-selection and notification, only those cases chosen in the H-1B lottery for processing will be submitted for review.
Using the online H-1B registration system, employers can register H-1B-eligible professionals for the H-1B “cap” lottery by providing basic information about the company, the prospective H-1B worker, the attorney and whether the petition is to be counted under the Master’s or Regular Cap. For the upcoming FY 2022, the pre-registration period will be from March 9 through March 25, 2021. Each pre-registration will require a $10 filing fee, payable by ACH, credit card or debit card. At the end of the registration period, USICS will conduct a randomized lottery of the submissions and then notify employers whose Petitions were selected for review. Employers with selected cases will then have 90 days to file their I-129 petitions and accompanying documents to USCIS.
For the upcoming “cap” season, the Law Office of Matthew I. Hirsch is preparing to submit online registrations for Employers and, upon request, will circulatie additional information, registration questionnaires and document checklists. Since this new procedure relies on a still-new on-line platform, concerns remain about the functionality of the system. However, last year worked well and, for the upcoming “cap season” the Law Office of Matthew I. Hirsch will keep a close eye on developments and will notify clients and others as to any changes in the pre-registration process.
For more information about the new H-1B online pre-registration process click here. For questions on pre-registration, the H-1B cap or preparing Petitions for filing under the H-1B for the coming year, contact us.