In this video attorney Jacob Sapochnick discusses a very hot topic in the world of immigration—the H-1B visa lottery program. Learn how you can increase your chances of winning the H-1B visa lottery for the fiscal year 2024 cap in this video.
Recently, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that the initial registration period for the FY 2024 H-1B cap will open starting at noon Eastern time on March 1st and close noon Eastern time on March 17th.
The H-1B season is always an exciting time that gives you the chance of being selected in the lottery and the opportunity to live and work in the United States.
If you want to know more just keep on watching.
Did you know? The H-1B visa is a non-immigrant work visa that allows U.S. employers to hire foreign workers for specialty occupations requiring a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent. The most common occupations for the H-1B visa are the STEM occupations. Every fiscal year, USCIS is limited to a congressionally mandated visa quota of 65,000 cap-subject H-1B visas. Separately, 20,000 H-1B visas are available for foreign nationals who hold a master’s or other advanced degree from a US institution of higher education (cap-exempt).
Are you looking to work in the United States in year 2023? Then the H-1B visa program might interest you.
The H-1B registration period will soon open on March 1st and close on March 17th. To help you prepare for the upcoming H-1B visa lottery, we share with you our tips and tricks on how you can increase your chances of being selected.
What is the H-1B visa program?
The H-1B program is a temporary (nonimmigrant) visa category that allows U.S. employers to petition foreign workers to work in “specialty occupations” that require at least a bachelor’s degree or the equivalent. Jobs in the STEM fields such as mathematics, science, technology, engineering, and mathematics are the most common, however other occupations can also qualify such as fashion models and accountants. Typically, the initial duration of an H-1B visa classification is three years, which may be extended for a maximum of six years.
Before an employer can file a petition with USCIS, the employer must complete an electronic registration for each foreign worker on their myUSCIS online accounts during the registration period and pay the required $10 H-1B registration fee.
Due to the high demand for the H-1B visa, the U.S. government created a numerical cap limiting the visas that can be issued to 65,000 per fiscal year (6,800 are reserved for nationals of Chile and Singapore). An additional 20,000 visas are available for those with a master’s or other advanced degree from a US institution of higher education (cap-exempt).
Every year, quota system creates fierce competition among U.S. employers who wish to bring foreign workers to the United States. Typically, every fiscal year USCIS receives more than three times the number of registrations that are needed to fill available visas. For this reason, the lottery system must take place.
What steps do I need to take to prepare?
- If you are the foreign worker: You must have a job offer from a U.S. employer who can petition for you to work for the U.S. company. Individuals cannot self-petition for the H-1B visa and must be sponsored by the employer
- If you are the employer: You must contact an experienced immigration attorney as soon as possible who can begin to assess your employee’s academic credentials and qualifications to participate in the FY 2024 H-1B visa lottery
- If you are the foreign worker: If you have foreign education, you must have your academic diploma and transcripts evaluated by an accredited U.S. credentials evaluation agency to determine whether your foreign education is equivalent to at least a U.S. bachelor’s degree. If your foreign education is not equivalent to a U.S. bachelor’s degree, then your work experience must be thoroughly evaluated by your immigration attorney to determine whether you will qualify based on your years of work experience
How can I increase my chances of being selected?
- Tip #1: Try to qualify for the H-1B visa under the Master’s cap. If you are a foreign national currently in the United States completing your bachelor’s degree, consider obtaining your Master’s degree from a U.S. accredited institution of higher education to increase your chances of success.
- Tip #2: Ensure that your initial H-1B registration is completed properly by the registration deadline of March 17th noon Eastern Time. Without the submission of a proper H-1B registration you cannot compete nor be selected in the H-1B lottery. Once selected, you must ensure that all supporting documentation for your H-1B petition is provided to prevent delays and issuance of Requests for Evidence later down the road.
- Tip #3: If multiple U.S. employers are submitting H-1B visa petitions on your behalf (in cases where foreign workers have received multiple job offers from different U.S. employers), you can increase your likelihood of being selected.
Please note that if more than one U.S. employer is selected, you must choose the U.S. employer that you wish to work for and proceed with your H-1B filing with that employer.
Note: Multiple registrations filed on behalf of one employee by one U.S. employer is prohibited and will disqualify you from participating in the H-1B lottery.
What happens if you are selected in the lottery?
If you are selected, USCIS will give you 90 days to prepare and file your H-1B application. If USCIS needs further information from the U.S. employer or foreign worker, they may issue a Request for Evidence asking for more documentation. Otherwise, if immigration is satisfied with your filing, the application will undergo regular adjudication with USCIS.
If all goes well and your petition is approved, you can begin your employment starting in October—the beginning of the fiscal year. Please keep this into consideration to prevent disruptions in your immigration status and employment.
If you are a student inside the United States, you may be able to use your receipt notice as proof that your H-1B petition has been filed with USCIS to obtain a cap-gap extension of your OPT enabling you to live and work in the United States until your H-1B employment begins on October 1st.
Questions? If you would like to schedule a consultation, please text 619-483-4549 or call 619-819-9204.
- USCIS FY 2024 H-1B Initial Registration Announcement
- H-1B Electronic Registration Step-by-Step Instructions
- All About the H-1B Visa
- February Visa Bulletin
- USCIS Processing Times
- Chats with Charlie YouTube Channel
- Immigrant Visa Backlog Report
- DOS Visa Services Operating Status Update
- ImmigrationU Membership
- Success stories
- Youtube channel
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