On December 6, 2019, USCIS announced that it is implementing an electronic registration requirement for petitioners seeking to submit H-1B cap-subject petitions. Employers seeking to file FY2021 H-1B cap-subject petitions, including those eligible for the advanced degree exemption, must first electronically register and pay an associated $10 fee for each electronic registration they submit to USCIS. The registration process now commences a month earlier, on March 1. This a a change from prior years in which applicants applied starting April 1, and often waited up to four months to find out if their application was selected in the lottery, causing great stress and costs to applicants and their employers in the meantime.
Per USCIS, under this new process, employers seeking H-1B workers subject to the cap, or their authorized representatives, will complete a registration process that will require only basic information about their company and each requested worker. USCIS announced that the initial registration period will start on March 1, 2020. Employers and their representatives will be able to set up required registration accounts prior to March 1. USCIS intends to close the initial registration period on March 20, 2020, and will announce the actual end date of the initial registration period on its website. USCIS will then run a random selection process on those electronic registrations. Only those with selected registrations will be eligible to file H-1B cap-subject petitions. If an applicant is selected, he or she will then prepare an H-1B application, including an I-129 form and supporting evidence, to file as soon as possible after selection.Continue reading