USCIS to Start Accepting H-1B Petitions From April 1, 2014

According to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), U.S. employers seeking to hire foreign workers can start submitting applications for H-1B visas from April 1, 2014. Similar to previous years, the cap on H-1B visas for FY 2015 will be 65,000. However, an additional 20,000 H-1B visas will be issued to individuals with U.S. master’s or advanced degrees, who are exempt from the 65,000 cap.

These H-1B work visas are popular among U.S. companies in IT services. This visa program benefits U.S. employers seeking to hire highly skilled foreign workers in science, engineering and technology fields. The demand for H-1B visas is increasing every year and just like the last year, the H-1B cap for FY 2015 is likely to be met fast this year. Experts believe that the cap will be met within the first seven days of the filing season.

USCIS will not accept applications that are incomplete or filed without the correct fee. Cases will be considered accepted on the date USCIS receives properly filed petitions with the required filing fee. USCIS expects to receive more than 65,000 applications for H-1B visas this year, before April 7, 2014. If the agency receives more number of petitions, it might use a random selection process to select the required number of petitions. Petitions that are not selected will be returned to the applicants along with the filing fee.

H-1B petitioners who are unaware of the filing process can use the USCIS checklist that will help them to properly file their petitions. There are a variety of requirements they need to meet in order to avoid delays in processing. They need to go through the form instructions and submit all the needed supporting documents. USCIS H-1B processing worksheet will help them to complete and successfully submit their H-1B petitions.

USCIS will begin premium processing of H-1B cap cases before 28 April, 2014. The agency has also made temporary changes to its premium processing practice since it expects to receive a high level of premium proceeding requests.