Immigration News Brief – September 2023

USCIS Completes Second Round H1B Lottery Selection

USCIS announced on July 31st that it has selected enough registrations to meet the fiscal year 2024 (FY24) H1B cap, beginning on October 1, 2023.

As with the first lottery, those with selected registrations will have their myUSCIS accounts updated to include a selection notice. The online accounts will show one of the following:

  • Submitted – A registration status may continue to show “Submitted” after the initial selection process has been completed. “Submitted” registrations will remain in consideration for selection until the end of the fiscal year.
  • Selected – Selected to file a FY24 cap-subject H1B petition.
  • Denied – A duplicate registration was submitted by the same registrant for the same beneficiary. If denied as a duplicate registration, all registrations submitted for this beneficiary for the fiscal year are invalid.
  • Invalidated-Failed Payment – A payment method was declined and not reconciled.

As with the first lottery, H1B petitioners will have 90 days to file a corresponding H1B petition, with a filing window from August 02, 2023, through October 31, 2023.

September Visa Bulletin Released

On August 8, the U.S. Department of State released the September 2023 Visa Bulletin. There was very little change from last month but significant changes are expected in the October 2023 Visa Bulletin, which will be the first visa bulletin of fiscal year 2024 (FY24). Applicants in Employment Based categories are looking forward to movements in EB2 and EB3 categories which allow for more Adjustment of Status filings in October.

USCIS Updates Receipts Process for Form I-129S

On August 3, USCIS announced changes to the way it issues receipts for L-1 nonimmigrant intracompany transferees (executives, managers, or specialized knowledge professionals) under a previously approved blanket L petition.

When filing Form I-129S, Nonimmigrant Petition Based on Blanket L Petition, together with Form I-129, Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker, the petitioner will now receive two notices: the receipt notice and the approval notice (if approved). Petitioners will no longer receive a stamped and signed Form I-129S in conjunction with the Form I-129 approval. Instead, the petitioner will receive a separate approval notice for the Form I-129S, which serves as the endorsement.

This approval notice will serve as evidence that a USCIS officer has determined the beneficiary is eligible for L-1 status based on an approved blanket L petition and constitutes an endorsement of Form I-129S as required by 8 CFR 214.2(l)(5)(ii)(E). A copy of that notice will also be provided to the beneficiary to be included with their visa and/or admission papers.

This change will provide petitioners with quicker, more organized, and more secure processing of Form I-129S, by eliminating the need for USCIS to print, stamp, sign, and annotate the paper form.

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