U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (“USCIS”) announced on July 24, 2017 that it will resume H-1B premium processing for cap-exempt petitions. To qualify, the petitioner must be (1) an institution of higher education; (2) a nonprofit related to or affiliated with such institution; or (3) a nonprofit research or governmental research organization. H-1B premium processing will also resume for petitions filed for beneficiaries employed at a qualifying cap-exempt institution, organization, or entity.
What does this mean?
This means that as of today, certain cap-exempt petitioners can file for premium processing (Form I-907) for Form I-129 H-1B petitions. The employer may file the request for premium processing together with the initial I-129, or it may perform an H-1B premium processing upgrade by filing the I-907 for a previously filed case.
USCIS previously opened up the H-1B premium processing program for a narrow class of H-1B beneficiaries, namely physicians under the Conrad 30 waiver program and for interested government agency waivers.
When will USCIS resume H-1B premium processing for all cases?
It is still unclear exactly when USCIS will resume H-1B premium processing for all cases. USCIS has stated that it plans to resume premium processing as “workloads permit.” Until USCIS’s workloads permit, we will have to continue to wait. If you file an H-1B premium processing case before USCIS resumes processing, USCIS will reject the I-907.
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