The Race To File H-1B Work Visas On April 1, 2014

by FordHarrison
Contact

Executive Summary:  We are releasing this Alert to remind employers of the fast approaching April 1, 2014 deadline for filing H-1B work visa petitions on behalf of foreign employees who need sponsorship for long-term work authorization in the U.S. 

Background

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will begin accepting H-1B work visa petitions on April 1, 2014. The H-1B visa classification is designed for foreign workers who will fill a professional occupation that requires at least a bachelor's degree or equivalent. There is an annual limit of 65,000 H-1B spots available each year for foreign nationals with bachelor's degrees and an additional 20,000 for those holding U.S. master's degrees. In light of what appears to be a rebounding economy, we fully expect that the annual H-1B cap will be exhausted within the first couple of filing days, if not on the first filing day itself. As a point of reference, in 2013 the available H-1B spots lasted for only seven days.

Who Needs an H-1B Visa?

We urge employers to identify current or future employees who are present in the U.S. under any of the following categories:

  • F-1 student visas;
  • J-1 exchange visitor visas;
  • TN/E-3 visas for Canadian/Mexican/Australian nationals;
  • L-2/H-4 dependent visas; or
  • E-1/E-2 treaty visas.

Any prospective professional employees who are residing overseas will also require visa sponsorship in order to work for a U.S. company. In many cases, the H-1B visa is the most common vehicle to achieve this.

What to Expect for the 2014 H-1B Filing Season

In light of the improved economic forecast, more employers have reported increases in hiring of foreign nationals for hard to fill professional positions. In April 2013, the H-1B cap was met in only seven days (from April 1, 2013 through April 7, 2013). During this period, the USCIS received over 120,000 applications competing for the limited 85,000 total H-1B spots. The USCIS was required by law to hold a lottery to randomly select the petitions it would accept for adjudication. The government then rejected those H-1B applications that were not selected under the lottery process or those that were received after April 7, 2013. 

For 2014, we anticipate greater demand for H-1Bs than in 2013, and expect that the quota will be exhausted in less than seven days, perhaps even on April 1 itself. To ensure the best chance of securing one of the limited H-1B numbers, employers must work with their immigration counsel to ensure H-1B applications reach the USCIS on April 1, 2014. 

When Should I Start the H-1B Process?

In light of the expected demand for H-1Bs, employers who would like to sponsor a worker for an H-1B petition should act quickly and begin working with an experienced business immigration attorney well in advance of the April 1, 2014 deadline. There are several prerequisite steps that must occur before an employer can file an H-1B petition with USCIS. These steps include registering the company with the Department of Labor (DOL), posting required notices, and obtaining DOL certification of a Labor Condition Application. These prerequisite steps can take up to three to four weeks, so time is of the essence, and starting early will allow sufficient time to accomplish all required steps.

Employers' Bottom Line

To maximize your chance of securing an H-1B, it is critical to file the H-1B petition on April 1, 2014. After the 2014 H-1B quota is exhausted, employers will have to wait until April 1, 2015 to file H-1B petitions again, and employees may risk losing legal status and work authorization.  

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© FordHarrison | Attorney Advertising

Written by:

FordHarrison
Contact
more
less

FordHarrison on:

Readers' Choice 2017
Reporters on Deadline

"My best business intelligence, in one easy email…"

Your first step to building a free, personalized, morning email brief covering pertinent authors and topics on JD Supra:
Sign up using*

Already signed up? Log in here

*By using the service, you signify your acceptance of JD Supra's Privacy Policy.
Privacy Policy (Updated: October 8, 2015):
hide

JD Supra provides users with access to its legal industry publishing services (the "Service") through its website (the "Website") as well as through other sources. Our policies with regard to data collection and use of personal information of users of the Service, regardless of the manner in which users access the Service, and visitors to the Website are set forth in this statement ("Policy"). By using the Service, you signify your acceptance of this Policy.

Information Collection and Use by JD Supra

JD Supra collects users' names, companies, titles, e-mail address and industry. JD Supra also tracks the pages that users visit, logs IP addresses and aggregates non-personally identifiable user data and browser type. This data is gathered using cookies and other technologies.

The information and data collected is used to authenticate users and to send notifications relating to the Service, including email alerts to which users have subscribed; to manage the Service and Website, to improve the Service and to customize the user's experience. This information is also provided to the authors of the content to give them insight into their readership and help them to improve their content, so that it is most useful for our users.

JD Supra does not sell, rent or otherwise provide your details to third parties, other than to the authors of the content on JD Supra.

If you prefer not to enable cookies, you may change your browser settings to disable cookies; however, please note that rejecting cookies while visiting the Website may result in certain parts of the Website not operating correctly or as efficiently as if cookies were allowed.

Email Choice/Opt-out

Users who opt in to receive emails may choose to no longer receive e-mail updates and newsletters by selecting the "opt-out of future email" option in the email they receive from JD Supra or in their JD Supra account management screen.

Security

JD Supra takes reasonable precautions to insure that user information is kept private. We restrict access to user information to those individuals who reasonably need access to perform their job functions, such as our third party email service, customer service personnel and technical staff. However, please note that no method of transmitting or storing data is completely secure and we cannot guarantee the security of user information. Unauthorized entry or use, hardware or software failure, and other factors may compromise the security of user information at any time.

If you have reason to believe that your interaction with us is no longer secure, you must immediately notify us of the problem by contacting us at info@jdsupra.com. In the unlikely event that we believe that the security of your user information in our possession or control may have been compromised, we may seek to notify you of that development and, if so, will endeavor to do so as promptly as practicable under the circumstances.

Sharing and Disclosure of Information JD Supra Collects

Except as otherwise described in this privacy statement, JD Supra will not disclose personal information to any third party unless we believe that disclosure is necessary to: (1) comply with applicable laws; (2) respond to governmental inquiries or requests; (3) comply with valid legal process; (4) protect the rights, privacy, safety or property of JD Supra, users of the Service, Website visitors or the public; (5) permit us to pursue available remedies or limit the damages that we may sustain; and (6) enforce our Terms & Conditions of Use.

In the event there is a change in the corporate structure of JD Supra such as, but not limited to, merger, consolidation, sale, liquidation or transfer of substantial assets, JD Supra may, in its sole discretion, transfer, sell or assign information collected on and through the Service to one or more affiliated or unaffiliated third parties.

Links to Other Websites

This Website and the Service may contain links to other websites. The operator of such other websites may collect information about you, including through cookies or other technologies. If you are using the Service through the Website and link to another site, you will leave the Website and this Policy will not apply to your use of and activity on those other sites. We encourage you to read the legal notices posted on those sites, including their privacy policies. We shall have no responsibility or liability for your visitation to, and the data collection and use practices of, such other sites. This Policy applies solely to the information collected in connection with your use of this Website and does not apply to any practices conducted offline or in connection with any other websites.

Changes in Our Privacy Policy

We reserve the right to change this Policy at any time. Please refer to the date at the top of this page to determine when this Policy was last revised. Any changes to our privacy policy will become effective upon posting of the revised policy on the Website. By continuing to use the Service or Website following such changes, you will be deemed to have agreed to such changes. If you do not agree with the terms of this Policy, as it may be amended from time to time, in whole or part, please do not continue using the Service or the Website.

Contacting JD Supra

If you have any questions about this privacy statement, the practices of this site, your dealings with this Web site, or if you would like to change any of the information you have provided to us, please contact us at: info@jdsupra.com.

- hide
*With LinkedIn, you don't need to create a separate login to manage your free JD Supra account, and we can make suggestions based on your needs and interests. We will not post anything on LinkedIn in your name. Or, sign up using your email address.