03.01.14

H1Bs: It is Filing Time!

Posted in H-1b at 10:34 pm by Lalita Haran

2016 H1-B filing season is here!

Employers and businesses in the United States must file specific petitions with the government and have it approved before a foreign national professional can work as their employee in a specialty occupation.

Specialty occupations that require a Bachelor’s or higher educational qualification may be filled by a qualified foreign national only if the employer timely filed an H1-B petition and obtained an approval.

Having assisted many U.S. employers through this process successfully, I can say that preparing an approvable H1-B petition is an involved process and also requires timely actions. The lesser known fact is that only a limited number of H1-B petitions are accepted. In 2015 April, USCIS accepted just about a third of the total number of H1B petitions filed for processing and more than 150,000 petitions were returned.

Historically, too many U.S. employers want to hire H1-B foreign national workers, but only some of them can. Because the demand for these workers is so high, the H1-B annual limit is exhausted very early every year. This means unless the petition is filed early on, an employer may be deprived of the opportunity to utilize the services of a desirable foreign worker.

The earliest one can file a new cap subject H1-B petition is April 1st, each year. Although, regulations require that USCIS must continue to accept these petitions for at the least 5 days, even if it had received enough number of H-1B petitions on the first day that would exhaust the annual H-1B limit. A lottery would be conducted to pick the required number of petitions.

This year too, it is more than likely that uscis would receive excessive number of H1B petitions at the start of the filing period. That means, the annual H1-B quota will exhaust possibly in the first week of filing. If this happens, many employers desirous of hiring capable foreign nationals will be disappointed.

Many employers are ignorant of this filing urgency and surely will not be happy about the need to join the race to file to overcome their limited ability to hire qualified foreign national worker. But the fact remains that if businesses/ employers want to hire an H1B professional worker, however skillful the foreign national may be, there is the need to join the RACE FOR H-1B number to win the chance to hire a super employee!