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USCIS Reopens H-1B Lottery

19 Aug

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has recently begun selecting additional H-1B registrations that were submitted in March 2020 for the fiscal year 2021 H-1B lottery. Foster attorneys have been notified that certain previously unselected H-1B registrations are now eligible for submission. As with cases selected in the initial lottery in March, USCIS is providing a 90-day filing window for the now-eligible H-1B submissions. 
 
As reported in a prior Immigration Update, registrations that were not initially selected in USCIS’ first round of the H-1B lottery were to remain in the system for the remainder of the fiscal year. USCIS held these registrations in the event that the initial round of selections ultimately resulted in an insufficient number of H-1B petition filings. 

Without any official announcement, USCIS began updating their registration system on August 14 to indicate that previously unselected registrations were now selected, and it sent email notifications in connection with these updates. No announcement has yet been made regarding the number of new selections in this second round of the lottery nor when the current selection window will close. Given the record 275,000 registrations submitted for this year’s lottery and the annual quota of 85,000 H-1B numbers, the probability that a previously unselected registration will be selected in this second round or any future round is likely small. 
 
Unselected registrations have not yet been designated as rejected in USCIS’ system, so the possibility of an additional round of selections does exist. Foster recommends that employers continue to monitor their emails closely for notifications by USCIS of H-1B registration selections. Foster will continue to monitor the situation for any developments. 

For more information regarding potential alternatives to H-1B classification, contact your Foster immigration attorney. We will be glad to aid in determining whether a candidate may qualify for one of these nonimmigrant classifications. We will provide additional updates on H-1B cap adjudications via our firm’s website at www.fosterglobal.com