USCIS has announced that starting February 19, 2019, it will resume premium processing service for all H-1B petitions (including change of employer or “port” petitions) filed on or before December 21, 2018. Petitioners seeking to upgrade their pending H-1B petitions to premium processing must submit their request to the service center where the petition is
The Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”) has posted a final rule regarding the H-1B cap selection process. The rule will be published in the Federal Register on January 31, 2019 and will go into effect on April 1, 2019.
The Final Rule
The posted rule is the final version of the proposed rule titled “Registration Requirement for Petitions Seeking to File H-1B Petitions on Behalf of Cap-Subject Aliens,” which was published for public comments on December 3, 2018. During the 30-day comment period, the proposed rule received over 800 public comments. …
Every January, employers go into high gear to prepare H-1B cap-subject petitions for filing on the first business day of April. This year, employers must also monitor for potential regulatory changes to the filing process. On December 3, 2018, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published a notice of proposed rulemaking in the Federal Register titled “Registration Requirement for Petitioners Seeking To File H-1B Petitions on Behalf of Cap-Subject Aliens.” The 30-day public comment period closed January 2, 2019, and employers remain in wait for the impact to this year’s cap-subject filings. While President Trump tweeted about H-1B changes that “are soon coming,” it is not clear whether they relate to the proposed rule.
The proposed rule seeks to accomplish two goals: streamline the H-1B selection and filing process by creating a pre-registration system, and increase the chances of selection for H-1B petitions eligible for the advanced degree exemption by reversing the order in which the cap lotteries are run.
US Citizenship & Immigration Services (the agency responsible for immigration benefits within DHS) received over 800 comments on the proposed regulation, including comments from the US Chamber of Commerce, the American Medical Association, and the American Immigration Lawyers Association. The public comments criticize the proposed timeline and logistics, identify impacts stretching beyond immigration law, and suggest that the proposed rule may face court challenges if implemented:
USCIS announced today that it is expanding its temporary suspension of premium processing to include additional types of H-1B petitions such as change of employer petitions and amendment petitions. Currently, the suspension impacts only cap-subject H-1B petitions which continue to be adjudicated under regular processing. Effective September 11, 2018, all other H-1B petitions will be…