AILA lawsuit against USCIS

H-1B Lottery Brought Under the Freedom of Information Act

  • How does the electronic selection process work?
  • How does the process for rejecting or accepting a petition function?
  • How does CIS determine how many petitions to select for the lottery, and how does CIS determine when they have reached the limit for petition approval?
  • How does CIS track visa numbers?
  • Does CIS actually allocate all of the visa numbers available?
  • Unless major immigration reform happens to significantly increase the number of H-1B visas available annually, the lottery is here to stay. That means it needs to be made public record how it works. Candidates and their employers and lawyers have no control over whether or not any given petition is selected, but checking the process to ensure that it is up to statutory standards, and as impartial as it claims to be is necessary for accountability. If your petition, or your employee or client’s petition is selected, it must be impeccable. CIS selects more petitions than there are H-1B visas available in the lottery process, then reviews the petitions they receive. That means they are looking for red flags, and many petitions must be rejected as part of the process. It is imperative that you get it right the first time. While RFEs can be answered, it is always best to prevent getting one in the first place. If your education, or your employee or client’s education is from outside of the United States, never file without a thorough credential evaluation that clearly spells out the US equivalent of your client’s degree, with a specialization that matches their job offer. We see so many RFEs every year that could have been prevented simply by taking this step before CIS has to ask you, or your employee or client to do so. About the Author Sheila Danzig Sheila Danzig is the Executive Director of a Foreign Credentials Evaluation Agency. For a no charge analysis of any difficult case, RFEs, Denials, or NOIDs, please go to or call 800.771.4723.  ]]>

    American Immigration Council and AILA File Suit against USCIS over H-1B Lottery

    can influence is what happens when your petition makes the lottery, and you can influence this by understanding CIS trends for what gets approved and what does not.” H-1B visa requirements are largely based on the nature of the candidate’s job and education. For this reason CIS trends surrounding requirements pertaining to these facets are important to understand and anticipate. This is the difference between your visa or your employee or client’s visa getting approved or receiving an RFE or worse. These trends also change, and have changed over the past five or six years and the number of H-1B petitions flooding in has increased. Danzig recommends consulting with a credential evaluator who consistently works with H-1B cases and RFEs before filing a petition or responding to an RFE. Evaluators who do the difficult work gain a complex understanding of international education norms, CIS trends, and what works and what does not work. “Forget about the lottery and focus on what you can do,” advises Danzig. Sheila Danzig Sheila Danzig is the Executive Director at, a Foreign Credentials Evaluation Agency. For a free analysis of any difficult case, RFE, Denial, or NOID, please go to or call 800.771.4723.]]>

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