H-1B Lottery Registration - New Process
January 22, 2020
By Rebecca Winterscheidt, Benjamin Nucci and April Greene Apking
United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) has implemented a new process for the annual H-1B lottery. Employers wishing to file H-1B cap-subject petitions with a start date of October 1, 2020, must first submit a registration online between March 1 - 20, 2020 and pay the $10 filing fee. All registrations must be made through the myUSCIS online portal. Those foreign nationals with U.S. master's degrees will still get two chances in the lottery, but unlike past years they will be included in the initial lottery of 65,000 visas. If they are not selected in that general lottery, they will then be included in a master's only lottery for the remaining 25,000 visas.
We anticipate that USCIS will notify those selected by the end of March. The selected registrants will then have 90 days in which to submit their complete H-1B petitions. We urge clients to conduct an immediate analysis of their potential H-1B applicants to determine whether preliminary steps, including obtaining the labor condition attestation should be taken prior to the actual registration. Particular attention should be paid to any applicant whose optional practical training period is ending in the next several months to ensure that those applicants will qualify for the cap-gap protection allowing them to continue to work if their application is selected and ultimately approved.
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