When to start the H-1B process

Are you thinking about hiring an employee who has never held H-1B status and wondering when to begin the process?  If you haven’t already started the process, the time to begin is NOW.

Why?  The process for your attorney to prepare an H-1B normally will take several days.  There will be questionnaires, back and forth with draft documents, preliminary government filings, unforeseen crashing of government websites, etc.  You want to give yourself and your attorney plenty of time to have your H-1B ready for filing on April 1.  Think you can take it easy and file after April 1?  Don’t bet on it.  Last year all available H-1Bs were taken on April 1.

Why is April 1 important?  It’s the first day that an H-1B petition can be filed.  That’s right, based on history from past years the first day that an H-1B petition can be filed is also typically the last day it can be filed because of high demand for a limited number of visas.  .  There are 65,000 H-1Bs available for those with a bachelor’s degree and an additional 20,000 for those with master’s degrees from US universities.  That’s a total of 85,000 H-1B visas for the whole country, not just one state or one region.

Do yourself and your immigration attorney a favor if you are interested in filing an H-1B petition.  Start the process now so that you are not stressed out and scrambling to get everything ready for filing at the last minute.

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