The cap for applications for H-1B foreign workers visa for FY 2022 got complete on March 30, 2021. This was announced by USCIS. The announcement said that:
- The number of electronic cap registrations for H-1B the US received exceeded the number of H-1B available
- A lottery was necessary as the quota was 85,000 new H-1B filings
- USCIS has completed a random selection process from the properly filed registration submissions
- It has issued notifications for all chosen registrations
The following are some FAQs that can keep you updated on the US immigration processes regarding the H-1B lottery.
How to know whether you have been selected in the H-1B lottery
An email notification from the USCIS is sent to the employer and/or attorney that indicates the changes in the online system. They then log in to the MyUSCIS portal to find out the status of every registration. The cases selected will be marked as “selected”. Consult with your employer and find out if yours was selected or not.
What happens to the registrations that don’t get selected in the lottery?
If not “selected” the other statuses that could come for you are:
Submitted: This happens when your registrations have been submitted properly but not yet selected in the lottery. These will be on “hold”. They will be taken up for a second lottery in case the USCIS doesn’t get a sufficient number of petitions to meet the cap. It’s possible that the USCIS will hold a lottery that’s coming up later in the year. USCIS could also select some of those registrations that are held in reserve. These registrations could appear as “submitted” till the time they are selected or the USCIS gets a sufficient number of petitions to meet the cap.
Denied / Invalidated-Failed Payment: Failure to make the payment of $10 in registration fee could lead to registrations getting denied. It could also happen when the employer submitted registrations in duplicate for the beneficiary.
When will my petition get filed after getting selected in the lottery?
For registrations that have been selected, employers will have 90 days to file their H-1B petitions to the USCIS. The period for filing H-1B petitions is from April 1, 2021, to June 30, 2021.
Is the expedition of my petition possible?
Pay an additional fee and H-1B petitions can be expedited on grounds of “Premium Processing”.
What are the steps to file a petition after the H-1B registration getting selected?
- Employers or their attorneys must complete the H-1B petitions and file them before the window for filing closes.
- The petitioner will be approached for personal documents for case preparation.
- The employer must first file an LCA with the Department of Labor.
- After the LCA is certified, it has to be signed by the employer.
- This has to be included in the H-1B petition and sent to the USCIS at the address specified on the notice of selection of registration (Form I-797).
What happens after the USCIS gets the H-1B petition?
After the USCIS gets the H-1B petition, the processing starts, and receipt notices are sent. If your case is filed for Premium Processing, the employer or his attorney will get an email from the USCSIS with the confirmation that the petition has been received.
As of now, owing to the COVID-19 situation, there will be significant delays in getting receipt notices. It could take several weeks for your employer or his attorney to get one. Nevertheless, they can check if their cheques have been encashed. If the cheques have been encashed, it indicates that the case has been accepted for further processing.
How is it possible for you to keep a track of the H-1B petition status?
Once a receipt notice for H-1B has been issued, the receipt number can be used for various purposes. The receipt number begins with the letter WAC or EAC. This depends on the location where it was filed. You can even set up a free online MyUSCIS account and track your case status.
On the portal, your case could be shown in any of the following stages:
- Case Was Received
- Case Was Received & A Receipt Notice Was mailed
- Response to USCIS’ Request for Evidence Was Received
- Notice for Request for Additional Evidence was mailed
- Case Was Approved
- Case Was Approved and Decision Was mailed
- Name was updated.
- Decision Notice Mailed
How long does the USCIS take for case processing?
Decisions on cases under Premium Processing will be made within 15 calendar days from the date of receipt notice. Under regular processing, the decisions could take several weeks to be made.
Next step after the approval of the H-1B petition
The beneficiary of the H-1B petition being approved can go on to get a visa stamped. He/she has 90 days from the starting date of employment to get this done. They can arrive in the US 10 days prior to the start date of employment. Generally, this date falls on October 1 of the year in which the petition is filed.
If you are looking to Study, Work, Visit, Invest or Migrate to the USA, talk to Y-Axis, the World’s No.1 Immigration & Visa Company.
If you found this blog engaging, you may also like…