USCIS to implement US$10 fee for H-1B visas

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has announced that all petitioning employers will be required to make a US$10 non-refundable fee for each H-1B registration.

The fee will become applicable once USCIS implements the electronic registration system. The registration fee is part of an agency-wide effort to modernise and more efficiently process applications to live or work in the United States.

The H-1B program allows companies in the US to temporarily employ foreign workers in occupations that require specialised knowledge and a bachelor’s degree or higher in the specific specialty, or its equivalent.

Upon implementation of the electronic registration system, petitioners seeking to file H-1B cap-subject petitions, including those eligible for the advanced degree exemption, will first have to electronically register with USCIS during a designated registration period.

“This effort will help implement a more efficient and effective H-1B cap selection process,” said USCIS Acting Director Ken Cuccinelli. “The electronic registration system is part of an agency-wide initiative to modernise our immigration system while deterring fraud, improving vetting procedures and strengthening program integrity.”

The rule will become effective on 9th December 9, and the fee will be required when registrations are submitted. USCIS is fee-funded, and this non-refundable fee will support the new electronic registration system to make the H-1B cap selection process more efficient for both petitioners and the agency.

USCIS is slated to implement the registration process for the fiscal year 2021 H-1B cap selection process, pending completed testing of the system. The agency will announce the implementation timeframe and initial registration period once a formal decision has been made.

Article published 11th November 2019