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USCIS Implements H-1B Registration for Next Year’s H-1B Lottery

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS), after publishing the final rule for a new H-1B lottery process in January 2019 has announced that the testing period is now over for the registration process in relation to the H-1B lottery and implementation will go into effect for the  fiscal year 2021 H-1B cap. See the USCIS press release here

Employers who wish to file H-1B cap-subject petitions for their employees must pay a $10 registration fee to register each employee it wishes to place in the lottery. This process is designed to streamline and reduce paper waste that had been the practice for so many years, and instead have the employer or their authorized representatives complete a registration process that will only need basic information about the company and the employee.

The initial registration period will open from March 1 through March 20, 2020. During this period, the electronic registration must be submitted by the employer or its authorized representative. If the number of registrations exceeds the H-1B numerical allocation, a lottery will be conducted between March 20 and March 31, 2020. Only those petitioners with the selected registration, with the specific prospective candidate, will be able to file a cap-subject petition for only that candidate. Note that the H-1B petition will still need to be adjudicated on its merits. Duplicate registrations by the same employer for the same employee will be discarded. 

The Department of Homeland Security plans to publish a notice in the Federal Register in the next few weeks to formally announce the implementation of this process. 

©2020 Greenberg Traurig, LLP. All rights reserved. National Law Review, Volume IX, Number 341


About this Author

Kristen Ng, Greenberg Traurig Law Firm, Nortrhern Virginia, Immigration Law Attorney

Kristen W. Ng focuses her practice on business immigration and compliance matters. She advises individuals and companies on a wide range of immigration matters, including nonimmigrant and immigrant employment-based cases, citizenship issues (acquisition, retention and relinquishment) and investor cases (E-2 and EB-5). She communicates directly with clients, including HR managers, high-level executives, and employees to ensure comprehension of each respective immigration process and procedure and to collaboratively produce the best immigration strategy and approach for...