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USCIS Completes Data Entry of Fiscal Year 2017 H-1B Cap-Subject Petitions

17:23 19 May in News Updates
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USCIS issued the following Press Release:

Release Date: May 02, 2016

USCIS announced on May 2, 2016, that it has completed data entry of all fiscal year 2017 H-1B cap subject petitions selected in our computer-generated random process. USCIS will now begin returning all H-1B cap-subject petitions that were not selected. Due to the high volume of filings, USCIS is unable to provide a definite time frame for returning these petitions. USCIS asks petitioners not to inquire about the status of submitted cap-subject petitions until they receive a receipt notice or an unselected petition is returned. USCIS will issue an announcement once all the unselected petitions have been returned. Additionally, USCIS is transferring some Form I-129 H-1B cap subject petitions from the Vermont Service Center to the California Service Center to balance the distribution of cap cases. If your case is transferred, you will receive notification in the mail.

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Cases selected in the lottery:    LAC will notify the employer and employee when a Receipt Notice is issued for a specific case.  We will then forward the receipt notice for any petitions selected in the lottery to the employee (via the employer).

Cases not selected in the lotteryUSCIS will return H-1B petitions that are not selected in the lottery to counsel with the government filing fees.  We will notify impacted clients upon receipt of the returned petitions, and promptly refund the USCIS filing fees to the employer.

LAC understands that waiting for news on lottery selection causes a great deal of anxiety for foreign national employees, and is also very frustrating for employers trying to plan staffing, workload and resources.

To address the most common questions:

Q:  If I haven’t heard that a receipt notice has been issued for my petition yet, does that mean my case has not been selected in the lottery?   

A:  Given that the data entry of cases selected in the lottery has just been completed, it is very possible that we will continue to receive receipt notices for selected cases for the next couple weeks. We cannot be sure that a case was NOT selected unless/ until we receive the returned petition from USCIS.  USCIS will issue another press release when it has returned all petitions. 

Q:  What are the alternatives for remaining lawfully in the U.S. and obtaining work authorization if a case is not selected in the lottery?

A:  The answer in every case may be different.  Your LAC attorney will be available to review each case and advise of options for those not selected in the lottery.

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