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USCIS News : Data Entry Complete for H1B FY 2017 Petitions

As anticipated in the our previous article on reality about H1B receipts and Lottery results, USCIS issued a news alert today indicating that they have completed data entry of the all the H1B FY 2017 cap subject petitions. Lets me summarize the news alert and what to expect.

Summary of USCIS News – Data Entry Complete for H1B 2017 Petitions :

  • As of May 2nd, 2016 USCIS has completed data entry of all the petitions filed for H1B under fiscal year 2017 quota and selected in random selection aka H1B Lottery
  • USCIS will start to return all the petitions that were not selected in lottery.
  • There is NO SLA or time frame that USCIS tells for expecting the rejected petitions that were not selected in lottery due to the high volume of filings.
  • The petitions or employers should NOT contact USCIS regarding their H1B petition until they receive some sort of communication about their petition either a reject notice or case receipt.
  • USCIS will issue a press note once they complete sending out all the rejected petitions.
  • USCIS has also transferred some cases from Vermont processing Center to California Processing Center to balance load. The key thing is that they will indicate the same via notification to employers regarding the same. Also, they would need to work with the new processing center, if they need to upgrade to premium processing or for any sort of correspondence.

What does this USCIS Alert Indicate ?  How has it been last year for FY 2016 ? What to Expect ?

Compared to last year, the press alert came in couple of days early regarding the completion of the data entry of H1B petitions. This is the second year USCIS is releasing such an alert, they have not issued such alert prior to 2016 quota.  Anyways, last year after the press alert came in on May 4th regarding data entry completion, first regular processing petitioners started to get the receipts for a month or so. Also, reject notices went on for over 2 months. The final press alert indicating the completion of the return of the rejected petitions came in on July 14th. So, if USCIS were to follow the same processing timelines, they would complete it by July 12th, as the data entry was done two days earlier. It could be a little earlier as well. The reason is that, USCIS received more premium processing petitions this year than last year, this is from the fact that they did not move the premium processing start date too much earlier and kept it from May 12th.

All in all, the waiting continues folks and it may be a nightmare waiting for some of these things…but, I guess that is life. Ideally, all selected petition holders should get receipt notices in 2 to three weeks, after that chances get slim and I suggest you plan for Plan B.  In general,  be positive when you wait..Also, if you were unlucky you will get a physical reject notice from USCIS that looks like Sample H1B Reject Notice

The below quote by Rocky states the reality of life…Don’t give up, if luck does not favour you.

[blockquote cite=”Sylvester Stallone, Rocky Balboa ” type=”right”] Let me tell you something you already know. The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It’s a very mean and nasty place and I don’t care how tough you are it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard ya hit. It’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward. How much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done! [/blockquote]

What are your thoughts ?


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  1. i have got information that my check is cashed on may 1st 2016. Till now there is no news of receipt number. its almost more than a month now. mine is regular processing. what does this mean?

    • 2ndtimer,

      This means you should be after your employer to get the receipt number; and your employer should be after to get the receipt number (in case you really did make through the lottery but employer doesn’t know the number).

      Ask the employer to check the back copy of cashed checks as it would contain the receipt number.

  2. Hello Saurabh,

    I got my receipt no 3 days back from my Employer and it starting with WAC-16-145-*****

    When I tried to check my receipt number online case status through USCIS, getting the validation error as shown below

    “My Case Status does not recognize the receipt number entered. Please check your receipt number and try again. If you need further assistance, please call the National Customer Service Center at 1-800-375-5283.”

    Can anyone help me on this issue.

    NOTE: I have already removed the “-” like WAC16145***** and checked but still getting validation error,

    Please suggest, what i have to do in this case??

    Thanks you

    • MKS,

      Confirm w/ employer if you have the correct receipt number. If it still fails after next few days, then ask employer to follow-up w/ USCIS and get it sorted out. It could be a technical issue on USCIS side.

  3. Hello,

    Is there anyone get receipts number or any update through Niche Software Solutions and Satnam Data System ?

    Thanks in advanced for yours quick response.


  4. My god….this waiting period is really tough….I know there are many going through the same…..lets all stay tough and keep our hopes….All the best everyone including me 🙂

  5. Does it mean if Cheq not cleared by 2nd May means we have lose hope???Please clarify guys .

    Everyone keep on posting their questions but not getting answers fro who knows ? Please help .

        • Yes, officially there are hopes till your packet comes back. But after May 12 chances are very slim. Cheque clearance depends on your bank.

          • Dear GOL,

            All are saying that check encasement is already done , and there are no more hopes as data entry is over.


  6. Hi Admin,

    There are so many questions and opinions posted here..Can you please summarize the current status.

    Since, next 2 days are week-ends, your valuable inputs might help to clarify.

    Still is there a hope?, my company says there is a chance until next Tuesday.

    is it so?

    Thanks in advance.

    • KRK,

      I would say all selected petitions should receive the paper notice by end of next week. There may be few outliers (notice lost in transit, wrong address etc), but majority of notices will be successfully delivered by next weekend. Anyone still waiting after next weekend, should be prepared for the worst and start working on alternate options.

      • does this apply to Non Advanced, Regular Processing applications as well ?
        sorry, new here so not aware of the detailed process.

          • Hi Saurabh,

            I filed from company A and got picked in Lottery, After the petition is approved , Can i apply transfer for company B. Is it Possible or after stamping is done transfer to company B can be applied.


          • H1FirstTimer,

            If you plan to move to B before Oct 1, then I have seen mixed success with this. Some say it is possible, while others don’t.

            If you plan to move to B after Oct 1, then this is possible. You can appear for stamping using B’s approved petition and then travel to US.

  7. I heard from a friend that check encashment is already done for entire applications which got picked.
    Is that end of story for us?

      • If cheque enchased then the employer must know this right as their money debited or still the employer need to wait for receipt to confirm ? Those who applied through consultancy no need to wait till may 15 ?

  8. I just received this note from my attorney when I asked them if it’s game over for me cause my SEVIS hasn’t been updated:
    “The SEVIS system is not affected when the H-1B is selected by USCIS. ICE runs the SEVIS system and USCIS does not notify them”
    do you think they have a valid point? I see many people here saying they know that their SEVIS status is updated to H1B Cap.

    • sinabagh,

      Although they are different entities, yet one impacts the other. For example, when USCIS approves COS, your SEVIS record is closed.

      • It gets closed from Oct 1, or immediately after approval?
        Also what happens when COS is denied ? Should I get stamping from abroad before Oct1? Does SEVIS get terminated or will still remain active in that case?

        • Acem,

          It will be closed on COS effective date. So if H-1 is approved in June w/ COS effective date of Oct 1, then it will be Oct 1. If H-1 gets approved in Nov w/ COS effective date of Nov, then it will be Nov.

          However, if your OPT is expiring prior to Oct 1, then it would get closed on Oct 1 as cap-gap is extended till Oct 1 only.

  9. My employer says that they got one list and my name is not there in that. He told me to wait till next Friday (May 13th) as he is entirely not sure if all went through or no.

    What should I do?
    Is it over for me?

  10. my employer says it confidential, we will disclose it in June…….What does it mean,
    Mine is not picked up in lottery…….

    • What is so confidential about not telling h1b petitioner if picked in lottery or not . This is bullsh**

      • These will be stupid HR policies to publish the results in June or July. By that time job market outside will not be much hot. And if anyone quit because of this, they can convince them to stay till dec so that they can nominate for next processing.

  11. Hi,

    I haven’t received any update from my employer. From the data entry completion announcement form USCIS, how long I can hope for the best? Could you please share your opinions . Many people conveyed that , end of next week. Does it mean 13 May 2016 ???

  12. Hi,

    My Employer informed on April 29th, that the check is en cashed. So, it means picked in lottery, right? and they said they are waiting for official mail to give receipt no to me. any one has idea, how many days it will take to get receipt no after check en cash?

    • My check got on Apr 27th and I got the receipt from my HR on 3 rd May early morning.. Two hours after the announcement of USCIS that they have completed the data entry process for the picked petitions in the lottery.

      • Congratz….I am yet to receive any updates from the HR….it seems my chances are slim but still I haven’t given up hope…..I hope to hear the good news this week…..And one more thing, have you applied through the trivandrum speridian office?


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