USCIS Updates the H-1B Visa Registration and Application Process

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U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has introduced significant updates to the H-1B visa registration and application process. These changes are aimed at enhancing the integrity of the system and minimizing fraud. A key aspect of this update is a revamped registration process that ensures equal chances for all beneficiaries, regardless of the number of registrations submitted on their behalf.

How Will the New Rules Impact the H-1B Registration Process?

The revised rules establish a more beneficiary-focused approach to the H-1B registration process. This means that selections will be made based on individual beneficiaries rather than per registration. This initiative is designed to curb fraudulent practices and ensure a fair chance of selection for each applicant. Starting from the fiscal year 2025 registration period, USCIS will require registrants to submit valid passport or travel document information for each beneficiary. The document used must be the one intended for entry into the U.S. if an H-1B visa is granted, and each beneficiary can only be registered under one document.

What Are the Key Dates and Procedures for the FY 2025 H-1B Cap?

The initial registration period for the FY 2025 H-1B cap is scheduled from noon Eastern on March 6, 2024, through noon Eastern on March 22, 2024. Prospective petitioners and their representatives must use a USCIS online account to register each beneficiary electronically and pay the registration fee during this window.

What Should Petitioners Know About Online Filing for Forms I-129 and I-907?

USCIS is introducing online filing for Forms I-129 and I-907 starting February 28, 2024, for non-cap H-1B petitions. This development simplifies the filing process and enhances collaboration within organizations and with legal representatives. However, paper filing remains an option, though it cannot be linked to the new online accounts during the initial launch phase.

Are There Any Changes to the Filing Fees and Form Editions?

The USCIS announcement includes a final rule effective post-initial registration period for FY 2025 H-1B cap, which will keep the registration fee at $10. Additionally, a new edition of Form I-129 will be available from April 1, 2024, and only this edition will be accepted for H-1B cap petitions.

If you’d like to know more or need legal guidance with your immigration matter, please don’t hesitate to contact the knowledgeable H-1B visa lawyers in New York City from the Lightman Law Firm today.