H-1B visa registration for 2022 to kickstart on March 9, says US federal agency

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The successful applicants would be notified by March 31, said the US Citizenship and Immigration Services. (Photo for representation: AFP)

The process for registration for the H-1B visa application for the next fiscal year will begin on March 1, a federal agency in the United States (US) made the announcement on Saturday.

Through a computerised draw of lots, the successful applicants would be notified by March 31, it added.

‘Successful applicants can join new jobs in US on Oct 1’

Prospective petitioners and representatives will be able to fill out petitioner and beneficiary information and submit their registrations during the registration period, the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) said.

The initial registration period for the fiscal year 2022, H-1B will open at noon (Eastern) on March 9 and run through noon March 25, said the USCIS.

The agency will randomly select registrations and send selection notifications by March 31, if it receives enough registrations by March 25. The successful applicants would be able to join their new jobs in the US on October 1, when the American fiscal year starts.

The numbers game

As mandated by the Congress, the USCIS can issue a maximum of 65,000 H-1B visas in a year. It can also issue another 20,000 H-1B visas to foreign students who have completed higher studies from a US university in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects.
The quick announcement by the USCIS on the next year’s H-1B registration process comes a day after it said that it is delaying the implementation of the Donald Trump administration policy of allocation of H-1B through a wage and skilled based process.
The Trump-era rule was scheduled to go into effect on March 9.

‘Will protect economic interests of American workers’

On January 7, the USCIS announced to do away with the traditional lottery system in deciding the successful applicants for the H-1B visas.
The USCIS had said it would prioritise wages to protect the economic interests of American workers, and better ensure that the most highly skilled foreign workers benefit from the temporary employment programme. In a statement on Thursday, the USCIS, however, said that it is delaying the rule’s effective date until December 31, 2021.

What is a H-1B visa

The H-1B visa is a non-immigrant visa that allows US companies to employ foreign workers in specialty occupations that require theoretical or technical expertise. Technology companies depend on it to hire tens of thousands of employees each year from countries like India and China.
The notification by the USCIS came a day after the Joe Biden administration announced that it will “continue with the traditional lottery system” to issue the much sought-after work visa to foreign professionals.

(With inputs from PTI)