U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that it will begin accepting electronic registrations for H-1B candidates, subject to the annual quota, beginning on noon Eastern on March 1, 2022. The registration period will run through noon Eastern March 18, 2022.
The H-1B is a temporary visa category that allows employers to petition for highly educated foreign professionals to work in specialty occupations that require at least a bachelor’s degree or the equivalent.
New H-1B petitions are subject to a yearly numerical quota or cap of 65,000 H-1B visas, with an additional 20,000 visas reserved for employees with a U.S. master’s or doctorate degree. Because demand for H-1Bs far outpaces the supply of available visas, the immigration authorities (USCIS) conduct a random selection process or lottery.
The Rules of the Lottery Registration
· Employers are required to use a myUSCIS online account to register each employee electronically for the lottery.
· Employers will use a registrant account. Employers will be able to create new registrant accounts beginning at noon Eastern on February 21, 2022.
· Employers may submit only one registration per employee. If USCIS detects multiple registrations for the same employee, it will discard all registrations for that individual.
· Employers must provide basic information about the company and the employee.
· Employers must pay a $10 registration fee per registered candidate.
· USCIS intends to notify employers of any selected registrants by March 31, 2022.
· Employers may only submit H-1B petitions for cap-subject employees selected in the H-1B registration process. Selection in the H-1B registration process does not guarantee approval of the H-1B petition.
We strongly recommend that all employers begin identifying whether they have any employees that will require an H-1B and, if so, prepare to register those candidates for the lottery on March 1, 2022. Please contact your Parker Poe attorney for additional details or to discuss whether the H-1B is feasible for your workforce.