USCIS Resumes Premium Processing for H-1B Visa Petitions
From: USADNEWS Volume XI, Issue 8
On September 18, 2017 U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that it has resumed processing for all H-1B visa petitions subject to the Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 cap. The cap is set at 65,000 visas. An additional 20,000 visas are set aside for workers with a master’s degree or higher, and premium processing has resumed for those petitions as well. Premium processing is available only for petitions that are currently pending, not for new submissions, since USCIS received enough petitions in April to meet the FY 2018 cap.
USCIS previously resumed premium processing for H-1B visa petitions for physicians under the Conrad 30 waiver program, for interested government agency waivers, and for certain H-1B petitions such as extensions of stay. USCIS states that it plans to resume premium processing, as agency workloads permit, for all other remaining H-1B petitions not subject to the cap. In the meantime, remaining petitioners may submit a request to expedite their application if they meet specific agency criteria. Those requests will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis and granted at the discretion of office leadership.