Time To Begin Preparation of H-1B CAP FY 2015 Petitions
On April 1, 2014, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will begin accepting H-1B petitions subject to cap limits for the fiscal year (FY) 2015. Although April may seem far off, several factors including increasing demands for H-1B workers, an anticipated high volume of Labor Condition Application (LCA) filings, and the possibility of another federal government shutdown signal that it is not too early for employers to being preparing for the H-1B cap season now.
The H-1B cap for FY 2014 was reached within the first week of filing and a lottery to select H-1B petitions for adjudication was conducted for the first time since 2008. With employers filing H-1B petitions for those who missed the most recent year’s cap, as well as new petitions being filed on behalf of graduates and new employees, we anticipate that a large number of H-1B cap FY 2015 filings will result in the H-1B quota being quickly reached. An increase in H-1B cap petitions will lead to a high volume of Labor Condition Application (LCA) filings, a required component of all H-1B petitions. Consequently, we could see significantly slower processing times and backlogs within the Department of Labor (DOL). Furthermore, should another federal government shutdown occur in January, it is likely that the processing of LCAs would be halted, possibly impacting a company’s ability to file H-1B cap petitions on April 1st.
We urge employers to identify potential H-1B cap cases now and work with immigration counsel to ensure timely filing of cases.
If you have any questions about this alert, please contact your Gibney representative or email firstname.lastname@example.org.