03.01.14

Filing period for H1B has arrived

Posted in H-1b at 10:34 pm by Lalita Haran

2014 H1-B filing season is quickly approaching!

Employers and businesses in the United States must file specific immigration petitions with the government and have it approved before they can hire a foreign national professional. Positions that require a Bachelor’s or higher educational qualification may be filled by hiring a qualified foreign national only if they file a timely H1-B petition.

Having assisted many U.S. employers through this process successfully, I can say that preparing an approvable H1-B petition is an involved process and also requires timely action. The lesser known fact is that because of the annual limit imposed by the Congress each Fiscal Year, only a limited number of H1-B petitions may be filed. Because of this, employers desiring to hire qualified professionals must file their H1-B petitions before the annual limit is reached.

If history is any guide, too many U.S. employers want to hire H1-B foreign national workers, but only some of them can obtain government approval. Because the demand for these H1-B workers is so high, the H1-B annual limit is exhausted very early every year. This means unless the petition is filed early on, an employer may be deprived of the opportunity to utilize the services of a desirable foreign worker.

The earliest one can file a new H1-B petition each year, is April 1st. Although, regulations require that USCIS must continue to accept these petitions for at the least 5 days, unofficial reports in 2013 claimed that the H1-B annual ceiling limit was reached the very first day of filing and official reports confirmed that the total number of H1-B petitions filed within the first five days exceeded the annual H1-B numbers available for entire Fiscal Year. So, with certain exceptions, no employer could file new H1-B petitions for the rest of the year.

This year too, with a recovering economy, it is highly likely that employers would file excessive number of H1B petitions at the start of the filing period that would exhaust the annual limit very early and possibly in the first week of filing. If this happens, many employers desirous of hiring foreign nationals may go out of luck if they waited too long. It is therefore, important that employers considering hiring a foreign national worker act fast.

Many employers are ignorant of this filing urgency and surely will not be happy about the need to join the race to file to overcome their limited ability to hire qualified foreign national worker. But the fact remains that if businesses/ employers want to hire an H1B professional worker, a foreign national, there is the need to join the RACE TO FILE THE H1B VISA PETITION!

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