Filing Tips for H-1B Applications
For fiscal year 2009, the first H-1B filing date is Tuesday, April 1, 2008. Petitions are to be filed at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Vermont and California Service Centers, depending on jurisdiction. Mark A. Ivener, A Law Corporation recommends the following tips for employers planning to file H-1B applications:
- Check filing fee amounts and submit fees in separate checks to avoid inadvertent errors.
- Answer all questions in the application and check answers for consistency. Original signatures are required. Blue ink makes it easy for USCIS to confirm an original.
- Send only one petition per envelope.
- USCIS uses the information in Part C of the H-1B Data Collection and Filing Fee Exemption Supplement (Form I-129, page 11) to determine whether a petition is subject to the 65,000 and 20,000 (U.S. master’s degree or higher) H-1B numerical limitation caps. Part C, #4 of the Supplement does not refer to all J exchange visitor nonimmigrants with a waiver of the two-year foreign residency rule. Do not check “yes” unless the worker is a doctor who has been granted a Conrad 30 waiver to work in a medically underserved area.
- Clearly label all H-1B cap cases in red ink in the top margin of the I-129 petition. Use the following codes:
- Reg. Cap (65,000 regular cap cases minus the Chile/Singapore (C/S) cap cases received)
- C/S Cap (Chile/Singapore H-1B1s)
- U.S. Masters (20,000 cap exemption for beneficiaries with U.S. Masters or higher degrees)
- Exempt (for petitions filed by certain institutions of higher education; nonprofit organizations; and nonprofit research organizations or governmental research organizations, as defined in USCIS regulations)