With the H-1B season upon us, the employers filing for the first-time H-1B visa holders must now jump through more hoops to secure the cap-subject H-1B filings. With only 65,000 H-1B visas available annually and an additional 20,000 visas for the beneficiaries with advanced degrees, the lottery for this visa category is becoming more competitive.

On December 6, 2019, USCIS announced that they will be implementing a new registration process for the upcoming H-1B lottery. The new registration focuses on those employers seeking to file H-1B cap-subject petitions, including those eligible for an advanced degree exemption, for the fiscal year 2021 cap (employment start date of October 1, 2020).

Under this new process, employers will be required to register in the new electronic registration system and pay the associated $10 H-1B registration fee. This registration process will only consist of basic information in regard to the employer’s company and list each requested beneficiary/employee. For the fiscal year 2021 cap, USCIS will open the initial registration period from March 1, 2020, to March 20, 2020.

If a sufficient number of registrations are filed, USCIS will randomly select from these registrations and the selected registrations will be eligible to file H-1B petitions. Employers that do not participate in this new registration process will not be allowed to file an H-1B cap-subject petition for their respective employee(s). Employers must note that, if and when selected, they will be eligible to file cap-subject petition(s) only for the employee(s) named in the registration. Employers and prospective employees alike are awaiting the new registration process with bated breath.

See USCIS Alert: USCIS Announces Implementation of H-1B Electronic Registration Process for Fiscal Year 2021 Cap Season.

Learn more about the application and eligibility requirements for an H1-B visa or contact us for assistance.