This year, the H-1B cap-subject petition process will be a two-tiered approach.  Employers will first register H-1B employees electronically in March.  The lottery will then be conducted electronically, and applicants selected will then have 90 days to file their complete H-1B petition.

The electronic registration will take place from March 1st to March 20th, 2020, require basic information about the position, the candidate, and the employer, and cost a $10 registration fee. 

Due to the ease of entry, we predict there will see a significant rise in H-1B petitioners in March for the electronic lottery, making being selected even more competitive.  Candidates with advanced degrees – higher than a bachelor’s degree – have a higher chance of being selected, even more so than years past.  We also predict that the adjudication and RFE response period is likely to extend even beyond the past two years, and in some cases delay the start date for H-1B employees beyond October 1st, 2020.

The only thing to be done to increase your chance, or your employee or client’s chance of being selected in the electronic lottery is to have a master’s degree or higher.  There is more your can do in the case that they are selected to file to ensure that they get to work on time.

Be ready to file as soon as possible after receiving notification that you were, or that your employee or client was selected for the lottery.  That means having the petition largely complete in March, having points of vulnerability in the case identified already, and have a strategy in place to prevent issues that may arise.  Since the burden of proof on the petitioner has increased, that means having extensive documentation showing the candidate, the employer, and the position meet H-1B requirements, and providing additional support such as a credential evaluation or expert opinion letter to address education, occupation, wage level, and employer-employee relationship issues.

While it may be tempting to take your time this H-1B season, do NOT fall into that trap.  Treat every potential petition like any other year to ensure business continues uninterrupted by an extended and costly H-1B adjudication process.

For a free review of your case, visit ccifree.com/.  We will get back to you in 48 hours or less.

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