USCIS Announces Completion of Initial H-1B Registration Selection

Seyfarth Shaw LLP

Seyfarth Synopsis: USCIS officially announced that the number of electronic cap registrations exceeded the regular bachelor’s cap and advanced degree cap (“master’s cap”) for FY 2022. USCIS has also completed its initial lottery selections and confirmed which beneficiaries have been selected in the H-1B cap lottery. Petitioners with selected beneficiaries may file H-1B petitions between April 1, 2021 and June 30, 2021.

On March 30, 2021, the United States Citizenship & Immigration Services (“USCIS”) announced that it has completed the initial electronic H-1B cap registration selection process. The total number of registered beneficiaries again exceeded both cap quotas: the regular H-1B cap (65,000) and the U.S. master’s cap (20,000).

Employers with selected beneficiaries may file H-1B cap petitions between April 1, 2021 and June 30, 2021 to the USCIS Service Center indicated on the electronic registration notice. USCIS has not confirmed if H-1B cap petitions are eligible for premium processing, an expedited service that provides a decision within 15 calendar days for a supplemental government filing fee of $2,500.

Although USCIS has not yet confirmed the total number of registrations received, it appears that the number of registrations in FY 2022 exceeded FY 2021 based on the lower number of confirmed registration selections this year. Last year (FY 2021), USCIS received 275,000 cap registrations, resulting in a 31% selection rate.

We anticipate that deferred registrations will remain pending in the myUSCIS system as “submitted” for the rest of the applicable fiscal year unless USCIS opts to select additional registrations. Last year, on August 24, 2020, USCIS ran a second round of registration selections and permitted petitioners to file an H-1B cap petition for selected beneficiaries within a 90-day window. If USCIS runs a second round of registration selections again this year, it will likely be after June 30, 2021.

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.

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