USCIS Announces Final Rule to Strengthen H-1B Registration Process

USCIS has introduced significant changes to the H-1B visa program, aiming to create a more equitable system, combat fraud, and simplify the application process. This article breaks down the key updates, including a shift to a beneficiary-centric selection system, stricter requirements for registrations, and the launch of online filing options.
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In a bid to enhance integrity and reduce the potential for fraud in the H-1B registration process, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has introduced a final rule. This significant move aims to curb gaming within the registration system, ensuring fairness for all beneficiaries.

Here’s a breakdown of the key changes:

Beneficiary-Centric Selection Process Introduced

Under the final rule, USCIS will implement a beneficiary-centric selection process for registrations by employers.

This approach, focused on individual beneficiaries rather than registrations, aims to mitigate fraud and provide equal opportunities for selection, irrespective of the number of registrations submitted on their behalf.

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Key Provisions of the Final Rule

  • Start Date Flexibility: The rule codifies start date flexibility for certain petitions subject to the H-1B cap mandated by Congress.
  • Integrity Measures: USCIS is adding additional integrity measures related to the registration process to maintain the system’s integrity.

Requirements for FY 2025 H-1B Cap Registration

H-1B Visa Changes

Beginning with the FY 2025 initial registration period, registrants must provide valid passport or travel document information for each beneficiary. USCIS emphasizes that each beneficiary should only be registered under one passport or travel document.

Implications for H-1B Petitions

The final rule also empowers USCIS to deny or revoke H-1B petitions in cases where the registration contains false information or the associated fee is invalid. This step reinforces the agency’s commitment to upholding the integrity of the H-1B program.

FY 2025 H-1B Cap Registration Period Details

The initial registration period for the FY 2025 H-1B cap will commence on March 6, 2024, at noon Eastern Time and conclude on March 22, 2024, at noon Eastern Time. During this window, prospective petitioners must use a USCIS online account to register each beneficiary electronically and pay the registration fee.

Online Filing for Forms I-129 and I-907

Starting February 28, 2024, USCIS will launch new organizational accounts in the USCIS online portal, facilitating collaboration and preparation of H-1B registrations and associated forms.

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Additionally, online filing for Forms I-129 and I-907 for non-cap H-1B petitions will commence on the same date. USCIS will begin accepting online filings for H-1B cap petitions and associated forms on April 1, 2024.

Fee Adjustments and Important Dates

USCIS will increase the filing fee for Form I-907 effective February 26, 2024, to account for inflation. Any filings postmarked on or after this date with incorrect fees will be rejected.

Important Dates and Information from the H-1B Final Ruling

InformationDate/PeriodDetails
H-1B Registration Final Rule Effective DateMarch 1, 2024Applies to registrations starting March 6, 2024
FY 2025 H-1B Cap Registration PeriodMarch 6th – March 22nd, 2024Register electronically through USCIS online account and pay the fee.
Online Filing Launch – Forms I-129 and I-907 (Non-Cap Petitions)February 28th, 2024Submit H-1B petitions and associated premium processing requests electronically.
Online Filing Launch – Forms I-129 and I-907 (Cap-Selected Petitions)April 1st, 2024Only for petitions whose registrations were selected in the lottery.
New Form I-129 RequiredApril 1st, 2024Reflects changes from H-1B Registration and Fee Schedule final rules.
Increased Filing Fee for Form I-907Effective February 26th, 2024USCIS will reject forms with incorrect fees postmarked on or after this date.
Organizational Accounts LaunchFebruary 28th, 2024Enable collaboration on registrations and petitions within organizations.
Paper Filing Option Still AvailableAll filing periodsEmployers can choose paper filing if preferred.

Further Resources:

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As the USCIS continues to implement measures to fortify the H-1B program, prospective petitioners and beneficiaries are urged to stay informed about these updates to ensure compliance with the latest regulations.


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Manish Khandelwal
Manish Khandelwal

Manish Khandelwal, a travel-tech enthusiast with over a decade of experience in the travel industry. Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Travelobiz.com, he's passionate about writing.

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