Gearing Up for H-1B Season


By: Nina Maja Bergmar

With less than three months left before the FY 2017 filing period, it is high time for employers to start gearing up for this year’s H-1B season.

Under the current cap system, the USCIS allots a mere 65,000 visas per year for applicants with a Bachelor’s degree and 20,000 additional visas for applicants with advanced degrees. Last year, the USCIS received a whopping 233,000 H-1B petitions within the first six days of the filing period, after which it stopped accepting applications altogether. The Commission then performed a computer-generated process to randomly select 85,000 visas to review and rejected the remaining applications outright.

The continuous increase in petitions over the last few years is a strong indicator that the statutory cap will be reached within the first week of this year’s filing period. Employers should therefore be ready to file their petitions on April 1, 2016—the first day of the filing period—to maximize their chances of securing an H-1B visa.

While obtaining an H-1B visa for a prospective employee can seem daunting, FMG’s attorneys are available to help guide employers through each step of the process. We are also available to discuss other types of non-immigrant visas, such as L-1 intracompany transferee visas, H-3 trainee visas, J-1 intern/trainee visas, and TN visas, as well as how to obtain a Green Card through employment.