FY 2024 H-1B CAP Initial Registration Period Opens March 1
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced that the initial registration period for the fiscal year 2024 H-1B cap will open at noon Eastern on March 1 and run through noon Eastern on March 17, 2023. During this period, prospective petitioners and representatives will be able to complete and submit their registrations using our online H-1B registration system.
USCIS will assign a confirmation number to each registration submitted for the FY 2024 H-1B cap. This number is used solely to track registrations; you cannot use this number to track your case status in Case Status Online.
Prospective H-1B cap-subject petitioners or their representatives are required to use a myUSCIS online account to register each beneficiary electronically for the selection process and pay the associated $10 H-1B registration fee for each registration submitted on behalf of each beneficiary. Prospective petitioners submitting their own registrations (U.S. employers and U.S. agents, collectively known as “registrants”) will use a “registrant” account. Registrants will be able to create new accounts beginning at noon Eastern on Feb. 21.
Representatives may add clients to their accounts at any time, but both representatives and registrants must wait until March 1 to enter beneficiary information and submit the registration with the $10 fee. Prospective petitioners or their representatives will be able to submit registrations for multiple beneficiaries in a single online session. Through the account, they will be able to prepare, edit, and store draft registrations prior to final payment and submission of each registration.
If USCIS receives enough registrations by March 17, they will randomly select registrations and send selection notifications via users’ myUSCIS online accounts. If they do not receive enough registrations, all registrations that were properly submitted in the initial registration period will be selected. USCIS intends to notify account holders by March 31.
Good news on H-4, L-2, and EAD processing!
Beginning January 25, 2023, USCIS will resume bundling the adjudication of Forms I-539 and I-765 for the spouses and minor children of H-1B and L-1 nonimmigrants along with the underlying Form I-129 if the forms are filed concurrently. USCIS will adjudicate these applications together whether the I-129 petition is filed under regular or premium processing. This bundled process will be in effect for two years. The announcement did not clarify whether this applies to pending cases or merely cases filed 1/25/2023 or later.
H-1B LOTTERY CAP SEASON IS FAST APPROACHING!
We will be registering H-1B cap cases in March for submission in the lottery for FY2024.
Attention employers: If you have employees who need to be registered for the lottery, contact me as soon as possible to make sure you don’t miss a lottery opportunity this year.
Considerations When Terminating a Foreign Worker (H-1B, H-1B1, E-1/E-2, E-3, TN, L-1, O-1)
I-693 MEDICAL EXAMINATION NEWS FROM USCIS (June 28, 2022)
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) plays a significant role in the processing of employment-based visas, and we want to ensure we use as many available visas as possible in fiscal year (FY) 2022, which ends on Sept. 30, 2022.
We urge anyone within the United States who may be eligible for an employment-based adjustment of status to note these important reminders regarding Form I-693, Report of Medical Examination and Vaccination Record:
- If you are planning to file an adjustment of status application, be sure to include a valid Form I-693.
- If you have a pending Form I-485, Adjustment of Status Application, please do not send an unsolicited Form I-693 to USCIS. We are proactively identifying employment-based adjustment of status applications with available visas that lack a valid Form I-693 and are directly contacting applicants to request that form.
- If you know that your previously filed Form I-485 does not have a valid Form I-693, your underlying petition is approved, and a visa is available to you, it will help USCIS use the available visas and adjudicate your application if you visit a civil surgeon and have a valid Form I-693 on hand when we send the request to you.
- A Form I-693 is valid for two years from the date that the civil surgeon signs the form.
For more information, visit our new Fiscal Year 2022 Employment-Based Adjustment of Status FAQs.
FY 2023 H-1B Initial Electronic Registration Selection Process Completed
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has received enough electronic registrations during the initial registration period to reach the fiscal year (FY) 2023 H-1B numerical allocations (H-1B cap), including the advanced degree exemption (master’s cap). We randomly selected from among the registrations properly submitted to reach the cap. We have notified all prospective petitioners with selected registrations that they are eligible to file an H-1B cap-subject petition for the beneficiary named in the applicable selected registration.
FISCAL YEAR 2023 H-1B CAP REGISTRATION PERIOD
On January 28, 2022, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced that the initial registration period for the fiscal year 2023 H-1B cap will open at noon Eastern on March 1 and run through noon Eastern on March 18, 2022. During this period, prospective petitioners and representatives will be able to complete and submit their registrations using our online H-1B registration system.
“Chats with Charlie – September Visa Bulletin”
Charlie does not expect retrogression in any of the Employment-Based categories in FY2022. If there needs to be a retrogression, he does not expect it to occur until last quarter of the year.
He hopes to resume estimates of coming visa availability in the October or November Visa Bulletin.
Temporary Extension of Form I-693 Validity and USCIS Filing Recommendation to File Form I-485 and Form I-693 at the Same Time
USCIS issued good news on Medical Exam validity today (8/12/2021)
USCIS is on track to approve more employment-based adjustment of status applications than it has since FY 2005. We have prioritized employment-based adjustment of status applications during every step of its processing and adjudication during this fiscal year. We continue to make processing and resource allocation decisions to increase the pace of adjudications and limit the potential for employment-based visa numbers to go unused.
If you are applying for adjustment of status to that of a lawful permanent resident with USCIS (also known as applying for a Green Card), please file Form I-693, Report of Medical Examination and Vaccination Record, together with Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status. Doing so may eliminate the need for us to issue a Request for Evidence (RFE) and helps avoid adjudication delays.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and related processing delays, USCIS has experienced delays in all aspects of operations. Applicants have also experienced difficulties beyond their control, including delays with completing the immigration medical examination. To address these issues, USCIS is temporarily extending the validity period of an otherwise valid Form I-693.
Effective Aug. 12, 2021, USCIS is temporarily extending the validity period for Form I-693 from 2 years to now 4 years. For decisions on Form I-485 issued on or before Sept. 30, 2021, the adjudicating officer may accept an otherwise valid Form I-693, if no more than four years have passed since the civil surgeon’s signature. The officer may accept for consideration a Form I-693 for a decision issued on or before Sept. 30, 2021 if:
- The civil surgeon’s signature is dated no more than 60 days before the applicant filed Form I-485;
- No more than four years have passed since the date of the civil surgeon’s signature; and
- A decision on Form I-485 is issued on or before Sept. 30, 2021.
You are not required to file the Form I-693 at the same time you file Form I-485, and many applicants bring their completed Form I-693 to their interview. However, some applications may not require an interview. USCIS makes decisions to waive interviews on a case-by-case basis. Therefore, to help save time and avoid adjudication delays, please file Form I-485 and Form I-693 at the same time. It is also important to note that the date of the civil surgeon’s signature on the Form I-693 must be no more than 60 days before the date you file Form I-485 in order to retain its validity, regardless of whether you submit Form I-693 with your Form I-485 or after you file your Form I-485.