Changes Announced to the H-1B Cap-Subject Process Days Before Filing Began

H-1B Cap Subject Process On April 1, 2019, USCIS started taking cap-subject H-1B petitions for FY 2020. Just 20 days before that, they released a memo detailing a new filing process. It includes changes to premium processing that have never been tested or used and the announcement of a new H-1B Data Hub online.

The changes to premium processing are based on a new two-phase approach. The first phase applies to FY 2020 cap-subject H-1B petitions that request a Change of Status (COS) and can concurrently request premium processing. The premium processing clock for these H-1B COS petitions is expected to start no later than May 20, 2019.

The second phase applies to those requesting consular processing (CP) and all other H-1B 2020 cap-subject petitions. The premium processing for these petitions is likely to open around June 2019 or later.

The data hub is meant to protect US workers by allowing public access to more information, such as approval rates, denial rates, and the name of employers who use the H-1B program. The new data hub went live on the USCIS website on April 1.

These initiatives were implemented to support the Buy American and Hire American (BAHA) executive order from President Trump.

You can read the official release, which includes additional details, on the USCIS website.