H-1B Cap Season is Fast Approaching

It’s that time of the year again: the H-1B cap season is around the corner! On January 28, 2022, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that the registration period for Fiscal Year 2023 will open at noon on March 1, 2022 and will close at noon on March 18, 2022, both Eastern Time. During this 18-day period, employers, directly or through their representatives, can submit registrations for prospective employees, using the USCIS online H-1B registration system.

The H-1B program allows companies in the United States to temporarily employ foreign workers in occupations that require the theoretical and practical application of a body of highly specialized knowledge and a bachelor’s degree or higher in the specific specialty, or its equivalent. Congress has set aside 65,000 visas for beneficiaries with a bachelor’s degree and an additional 20,000 for those who earned U.S. master’s degrees. During the last couple of years, USCIS has received an average of approximately 300,000 registrations, thereby requiring a lottery for selections to meet the established cap.

The H-1B registration system requires employers to first create an account on the myUSCIS portal. New accounts, for first-time companies, can start being created at noon on February 21. The process also requires payment of a $10 H-1B registration fee per each prospective employee. At the end of the registration period on March 18, if USCIS has received enough registrations to meet the cap, it will randomly make selections and send notifications to the corresponding myUSCIS account holders by March 31. Selected registrations will then have a 90-day period to file their H-1B petitions with USCIS for a visa start date of October 1.

Information contained in this publication is intended for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or opinion, nor is it a substitute for the professional judgment of an attorney.