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News – AILA update – USCIS says No Procedural Changes for H1B 2019 Season

As you know, Fall 2017 Regulatory agenda has lot of H1B visa related changes in the agenda and we have many H1B visa Bills proposed in 2017 & 2018 that are actively pursued by Trump administration and other democrats, many are worried, if any of those will be applied for H1B visa 2019 Season…below is quick update from AILA on the same.

What’s USCIS update to AILA on H1B 2019 Season ?

USCIS confirmed to American Immigration Lawyers Association ( AILA) on two things:

  • There will NOT be any procedural changes to H1B Visa 2019.
  • There may be temporary suspension of H1B premium processing for FY 2019 cap subject petitions and the premium processing suspension may not apply to H1B cap exempt petitions.

The big question is what does this update mean to everyone.

What does No Procedural changes to H1B 2019 season mean ?
It means that there will not be any changes in April 2018 for the FY 2019 quota to the way H1B petitions are filed by employers with USCIS or the way USCIS handles petitions, like if there are more petitions filed than the required cap . Basically, there will NOT be any change to the H1B visa Lottery Process that has been in practice for the last few years.

While many regulations like increasing the H1B wage to 130K USD, Pre-registration of petitions and picking them by salary offered & qualification, increasing H1B cap, etc. have been discussed extensively and either part of the current H1B bills that are in process or Fall 2017 Regulatory agenda, none of these will be implemented for the H1B 2019 season.

What does H1B 2019 Premium Processing Temporary Suspension mean ?
While USCIS indicated that as a recent practice they will suspend H1B premium processing for cap subject petitions, they did not indicate on how long this will be suspended, we will have to wait for the news announcement.  Basically, it may be similar to last year, but minor change is that they may not suspend cap exempt petitions. What it means is that H1B transfers, cap exempt petitions can still be filed under premium processing. Only, the new petitions filed for FY 2019 quota cannot be filed under premium processing.

What do you think of the recent update ?

If you are a newbie to H1B Process, please check out basics like What is H1B visa, Process, Quota, etc – FAQs .


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  1. As USCIS haven’t made any specific announcement regarding premium processing, do you think we are good to file premium processing for H1-B 2019 applications?

    • Nope USCIS has suspended premium processing for FY2019 cap petitions. Official news—>

  2. While the whole country is focused on H1B visa violation, no one talks about the silent killer – the L1A visa which is misused by many companies to ramp up foreign employment giving foreign workers access to US greencards in less under 1 yr! These companies do NOT look for talent in America – they hire abroad and transfer their employees to the US under L1A visas and speedily access a US greencard.
    Violators include such companies as Cognizant, ZS Associates, TCS and Infosys.

  3. It’s good, may the deserving ones get the chance to be in land of free and home of the brave… and may the fake IT consultants rot in hell

    • Hello BenB,

      John is absolutely right . You are ignorant of the fact that L1s John is talking about are not the “deserving ones” , He is talking about L1A International Managers.

      For this type of Visa(L1A/B), there is no qualification requirement (Bachelor Degree) , no salary limits (Cognizant , ZS Associates, TCS and Infosys and many others can pay $50k/year) , no numerical limit per year (millions can get L1As) , there is no time limit the guys can stay here (they get a 5year visa in the first entry and can extend their stay in the US for ever).

      Besides the above benefits , they will get green cards in 3-6 months . As a fact, USCIS handed over around 30,000 Green cards in last 2 years to these so called “International Managers” . The irony is, most of these Visa holders have a 3 year Science/Commerce degree from a University in India , not even equivalent to US high school diploma and our senators are talking about Merit based immigration system.

      All that is there to this visa is the “cheap labor” and USCIS ‘s blind eye towards this program. These are the ones taking US jobs and not H1s.

      If you are a real patriot (not the NEW ENGLAND kind !!) concerned about US jobs , do the following :

      1. Visit USCIS website and check it out, read the qualifications required for L1A international Managers and educate all concerned about it
      2. Check how many international Manager L1As were issued to TCS, Cognizant, Infosys, IBM, Intel, CISCO and Tech Companies – file a FOIA with USCIS to get this statistics ( it may turn out that there are more managers than employees) and share it with all
      3. Update your senators and let them do some thinking about the right enemy rather than focusing on the wrong one
      4. Educate all you know about the L1 program

      One tip, please educate yourself and others before cursing someone to rot in hell, which not the right mind set for the people of “the land of free and home of the brave” .

      America is great because of the intelligent thinking of the past leaders , opportunities created due to welcoming nature of the people of this country and not because of Ignorant cursing.

      • Thank you for such an enlightening response. I’d still like to say that these guys should rot in hell.. on another note, I’ve sent fax to Senators and also reported some body shops around here

      • Hello Mr. Sam (aka the keyboard warrior),

        If you know the abuse happening on L1 visa, than pls report it to your respective state agency

    • It should be possible to do premium process, when you apply for H1B extensions and transfers as they are cap exempt. Again, we need to wait for the official USCIS press release on this.


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