NewsFlash! Premium Processing for H1B Cap Cases Available in Two Phases19 Mar 2019
The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced today that premium processing for H1B petitions being filed for the fiscal year 2020 cap (i.e., H1B lottery) “…will be offered in a two-phased approach.” The first phase will be for cap-subject petitions being filed requesting a change of status. The second phase will be for all other H1B cap cases. This announcement only applies to cap-subject petitions being filed in the H1B lottery; premium processing is fully available for all other types of H1B petitions.
Rules for H1B Cap Cases Requesting a Change of Status
For any H1B cap case requesting a change of status, the request for premium processing (form I-907) may be filed concurrently with the H1B petition. “The USCIS will begin premium processing for these petitions no later than May 20, 2019, and will notify the public before premium processing begins for these petitions. If a petitioner does not file form I-907 concurrently with an FY 2020 H-1B cap-subject petition requesting a change of status, the petitioner must wait until premium processing begins to submit form I-907.”
Rules for All Other H1B Cap Cases
For all H1B cap cases that are not requesting a change of status (e.g., consular processing), premium processing will be delayed until at least June 2019. For these petition, form I-907 may not be filed concurrently with the H1B petition. Rather, the petitioner will need to wait to file the I-907 until the USCIS announces that premium processing is available for cap-subject petitioners not requesting a change of status.
Availability of H1B Employer Data Hub
The USCIS also announced that, on April 1, 2019, a new H1B data hub will be made available on USCIS.gov. This online tool will allow “…the public to search for H1B petitioners by fiscal year, NAICS industry code, company name, city, state, or zip code. This will give the public the ability to calculate approval and denial rates and to review which employers are using the H-1B program.”
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