USCIS to implement H-1B electronic registration process for fiscal year 2021 cap season

United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will implement an electronic registration process for H-1B fiscal year 2021 cap season, the organization announced late last week.

The new process will require employers to register each individual potential H-1B recipient by completing a basic, online form during the initial enrollment period, which will run from March 1 to March 20, 2020.

USCIS will then use a computer-generated lottery to select enough potential H-1B recipients to reach the cap. If an employee's registration form is selected, employers will then, and only then, prepare and file the entire H-1B petition for the selected registrant(s).

USCIS Deputy Director Mark Koumans said in a statement the agency has already completed "a successful pilot testing phase" of the new system.

"By streamlining the H-1B cap selection process with a new electronic registration system, USCIS is creating cost savings and efficiencies for petitioners and the agency," Koumans said in the statement. "(The) implementation of the registration system will further the goal of modernizing USCIS from a paper-based to an online-filing agency."

Employers will now only file complete petitions for those registered applicants already selected in the lottery. In the previous system, employers submitted an entire petition in order for each applicant to be eligible to enter the lottery.

The U.S. government caps the number of H-1B visas granted each year at 85,000 - 20,000 of which are allocated for foreign nationals who hold a U.S. master's or doctorate degree.

The USCIS will charge $10 for each H-1B electronic registration. Read the agency's full announcement here.

As always, please do not hesitate to call Garfinkel Immigration Law Firm at 704-442-8000 or contact us via email with any questions.

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