Can you believe that H-1B Season is upon us? Each year, I say it seems like yesterday we filed last year’s H-1B Cap cases. This year is particularly true as we have only recently filed certain H-1B Cap Cases randomly selected in a third lottery. USCIS issued the most requests for evidence and denials it has ever issued on H-1B Cap cases. In fact, USCIS has stated that it issued requests for evidence in 70 percent of the H-1B Cap cases filed. So, what have we learned?
1. The New Registration Procedure. USCIS requires employers seeking H-1B workers subject to the cap, or their authorized representatives, to complete a registration process that will require only basic information about their company and each requested worker. USCIS announced that the electronic registration process for the fiscal year 2023 H-1B quota lottery will open at noon Eastern on March 1, 2022 and continue through noon Eastern on March 18, 2022.
If sufficient registrations are received by March 18th, USCIS will randomly select registrations and send notifications via the myUSCIS online accounts. USCIS has indicated it intends to notify account holders of results by March 31st. If a particular registration is selected, the employer can then proceed to file a H-1B cap-subject petition with USCIS for the selected beneficiary. To learn more about this procedure see our blog at http://www.pollakimmigration.com/blog/h-1b-2020.
2. Assess your H-1B needs as soon as possible—at least from now until at least October 1, 2022. Do you have new contracts or projects? Do you employ F-1 students who are working on OPT or STEM OPT Employment Authorization cards that expire after April 1, 2022? Do you employ H-4 visa holders who are working on Employment Authorization Cards. Do you employ TN or E-3 work visa holders who you are planning to sponsor for permanent residence? Do you want to employ Candidates who were not selected last year who are now in some other status or who have left the country? These are all good candidates for this year’s H1-B Lottery.
3. Provide us with your information as soon as possible to determine if there are any issues. Do we need an Expert Opinion that the position is a professional occupation or that work experience is equivalent to a degree? This is particularly true for Level I salaries where the Government says that most of these positions usually require a degree, but some do not.” Reputable evaluation services also get backlogged in H-1B Season and may decline cases if received too late. It also may take time to get educational evaluations or copies of documents such as degrees and foreign transcripts.
4. If you have not filed an H-1B Petition before, the Department of Labor may need to verify your Federal Tax Identification Number which can add some time on to the typical 7-day wait to get an approval on the Labor Condition Application.
5. In all level 1 and level 2 salary situations, we want a detailed organizational chart showing who the beneficiary reports to and others in the same position and their academic qualifications. We also want copies of the degrees and resumes of supervisors and degrees and pay roll records of others in the same position.
As in the past, the annual regular cap for the H-1B quota for fiscal year 2023 will be 65,000. There are an additional 20,000 numbers for beneficiaries who have earned U.S. Master’s or higher degrees. Last year, the USCIS received 308,613 registrations for the fiscal year 2022 H-1B quota lottery.
Interested in an H1-B visa? Contact Karen-Lee Pollak or our H1-B Team at email@example.com to begin planning for the submission of their fiscal year 2023 H-1B quota lottery registrations.