What Is a “Cap-Gap”?

Where an employer subject to the H-1B visa cap properly files an H-1B petition requesting an October 1 start date and a timely change of status on behalf of an F-1 student, student’s F-1 status and employment authorization (if in Optional Practical Training) is automatically extended until September 30, thus eliminating the “gap” between the time the F-1 status would have expired and the October 1 start date of H-1B status. If the H-1B petition is not filed before the OPT expires, the student may not be employed again until October 1. Cap-gap does not apply to cap-exempt H-1Bs.


Please note that this article does not constitute legal advice from our law firm. We simplified the law to provide general information about one aspect of the H-1B visa.  If you would like to discuss if you qualify for the cap-gap or need help obtaining an H-1B visa, schedule a consultation with an experienced immigration lawyer in Scottsdale, AZ today or call our office at 480-425-2009! We look forward to talking with you!


H-1B registration starts on March 9, 2021

The registration for the fiscal year  2022  H-1B cap will start on March 9, 2021, and will end on March 25, 2021.  If there are more than 85,000 registrations received by March 25, the USCIS will randomly select registrations and intends to notify the registrants by Mach 31, 2021.

The petitions subject to the H-1B cap-subject may only be filed by those employers whose registrations were selected. USCIS delayed the changes to the H-1B selection process until December 31, 2021.

Please note that this article does not constitute legal advice.  We simplified the law to provide general information about the H-1B registration process for the fiscal year 2022.  If you would like to H-1B petition approved fast, schedule a consultation with an experienced immigration lawyer in Phoenix at today or call our office at 480-425-2009!


New proposed H-1B “wage-based” selection process

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) proposes to
change the process of selecting H-1B registrations for filing of H-1B cap-subject petitions from a random lottery selection to a wage-level-based selection process.

If more registrations were received during the annual
initial registration period than necessary to reach the
cap, USCIS would rank and select the registrations received generally on the basis of the highest OES wage level in the area of intended employment, beginning with OES wage level IV and proceeding in descending order with OES wage levels III, II, and I

These proposed changes would incentivize petitioners to offer higher wages
to H-1B workers or petition for positions requiring higher skills By changing the selection process, DHS would increase the chance
of selection for registrations or petitions seeking to employ beneficiaries at wages that would equal or exceed the level IV or level III prevailing wage. The DHS data shows that only 28.53% of H-1B petitions received in FYs 2018 and 2019 were filed for level IV and III wages.

The 30-day comments period starts on November 2, 2020.

Please note that this article does not constitute a legal advice.  We simplified the law to outline the proposed changes to H-1B selection process. If you would like to obtain an H-1B status, call our experienced H-1B attorney at 480-425-2009 or schedule your consultation online.


H-1B petition approval in 3 weeks

My client is a global marketing and branding company and filed a H-1B petition for a position of an Interior Designer.  The H-1B registration was selected in the H-1B lottery.  The Client was very cooperative and provided all documents necessary to show to the USCIS satisfaction that the Interior Designer is a specialty occupation according to the regulations.  In this case, the Petitioner (Client) normally requires a degree or its equivalent for the position and a baccalaureate or higher degree or its equivalent is normally the minimum requirement for entry into the position of the Interior Designer.   The position of the Interior Designer is also so complex that it can be performed only by an individual with a degree.

The client provided documents related to the position and showing that the Beneficiary (Employee) meets the requirements for the position.   The Beneficiary has a Master of Interior Architecture and has been working for the Client as a junior Interior Designer on her OPT.   My client was very happy to receive the approval just in 3 weeks, especially for entry level position.  Congratulations!

Please note that this case study does not constitute a legal advice.  We simplified the law in order to outline the H-1B process.  If you would like to discuss if you may qualify for H-1B status, call our experienced H-1B visa attorney at 480-425-2009 or contact an experienced H-1B attorney via our website to schedule a consultation. We look forward to discussing how we can help you obtain your H-1B visa


H-1B registration ends on March 20, 2020 (noon ET)

The USCIS has implemented the electronic registration process for the first time for the fiscal year 2021 (FY 2021) H-1B cap.

The employers (registrants), who are seeking authorization to employ H-1B workers subject to the cap, must first electronically register and pay $10 registration fee for each employee. The H-B registration process for FY 2021  started on March 1, 2020 at noon ET and remain open until March 20, 2020 at noon ET.

The H-1B random selection process, if needed, will then be run on properly submitted electronic registrations. The USCIS intends to notify selected registrants by March 31, 2020. The selected registrants may start filing H-1B cap-subject petitions on April 1, 2020.

If you are considering applying for H1-B status for your employee and would like an attorney to help you navigate this new process, call our experienced H-1B Immigration Attorney Irena Juras at 480-425-2009 or contact us via our website and we will assist you.


H-1B filing season approaches

It is now time for employers to start planning the H-1B petition filings for foreign national employees.  The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service will begin accepting H-1B petitions subject to the FY 2017 cap on April 1, 2016.  Beneficiaries of approved H-1B petitions will be eligible to start working on October 1, 2016, the beginning of the FY 2017.  While April 1 may appear to be away, it will be here sooner than you expect.

The H-1B visa category provides for the temporary employment of foreign nationals in “specialty occupations” for which at least a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent is required (for example, accountants, pharmacists, computer programmers, engineers, lawyers, teachers, and many other professions).

There is a cap of 65,000 visas per year plus 20,000 visas for workers who possess U.S.-earned masters or higher degrees.  It is expected, as in the previous years, that petitions received from April 1 to April 7 (the first five business days of April) will be considered in the H-1B “lottery” (computer-generated random selection process).  The lottery will select H-1B petitions, which will be accepted for adjudication.

As the economy improved and a large number of H-1B candidates is expected to apply this year, we advise employers to be proactive and move quickly to ensure their H-1B petitions are prepared and ready to be filed prior to April 1, 2016.  Keep in mind that prior to the filing of the H-1B petition, a labor condition application has to be certified by the Department of Labor and must be submitted with the H-1B petition.  For more information and help with your H-1B petitions, call us today at 480-425-2009 or contact us through our website!


It’s Time to Prepare H-1B Visa Petitions for Fiscal Year 2015

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services will start accepting H-1B visa applications on April 1, 2014 for Fiscal Year 2015. H-1B visas are for foreign workers in specialty occupations with at least a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent. The fiscal year 2015 starts on October 1, 2014. There is a numerical cap on H-1B visas, which for FY 2015 is 65,000 plus an additional 20,000 for individuals who earned a Master’s degree or higher from U.S. accredited educational institutions. The cap will be filled very quickly, so it’s very important to start preparing the applications with an immigration lawyer early. Before the H-1B visa application can be submitted on April 1, certification of a labor condition application by the Department of Labor is required.

The Department of Labor may take up to seven business days to certify the labor condition application. Therefore, it’s important to make decisions about hiring foreign workers quickly and start preparing the applications as soon as possible, so the complete application can be submitted on April 1. If you want to make sure the H-1B visa application is prepared correctly, please call Juras Law Firm, PLC in Scottsdale, AZ at 480-425-2009 or schedule an appointment with us today!