DHS proposes $10 filing fee for H-1B visa

In Mid-August, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced a new proposed rule in which there is to be payment of $10 as the filing fee for the petitioners of the H-1B visa. We shall be sharing information on how this works and its possible implications, in this article. So you can understand it better, and make the right choices as may suit you if you seek to apply for the H-1B visa.

WHAT IS THE PROPOSED FEE ABOUT?

This proposed fee, which the DHS has termed “appropriate, nominal fee”, is to help in the funding of the H-1B visa registration system, to aid in recovering the costs of its operation. Payments are expected to be made through pay.gov. the federal government’s online payment system. The registration requirements are still being considered. Several ideas for requirements include job title, salary offers, attestation of bonafide of the registration among others.reg. The requirements are such that should be able to help in checking fraudulent registrations, multiple registrations by the same company among others. This information is to be made publically accessible, to check the number of denials and approvals from each applying company. The information is also to be shared among federal state and other agencies as well as law enforcement.

This fee is to be for each electronic registration submitted to the USCIS. It is important to note, that only those whose applications were selected from the several petitions will be required to file the H-1B visa. This expected to save employer’s costs. However, there are doubts as to how this rule will be implemented. Especially concerning possible discriminations against Indian firms.

Under this rule, petitioners seeking to file, including those advanced degree exemption applicants, will be required to first electronically register with the USCIS during a designated period. Within the 90-day window.

Once this rule has been set, there is to be a 30-day allowance for the public to give and share their comments and concerns about the proposed rule. These are to be reviewed and responded to. Likewise, an OMB approval for a final rule must be obtained, before it can be implemented.

This plan has reordered the cap selection process to increase the chances of US (higher institution) trained petitioners getting the visa. As data shows, there has been a spike in applications for US advanced degree holders for the 2020 financial year. It increased by 11% as submitted by a DHS statement.

USCIS has suspended implementation of the registration requirements for FY 2020 to complete and ensure the effectiveness and user testing of the H-1B registration system. It is expected that the registration requirements are to have been implemented in the system by FY 2021.

EXPECTED EFFECTS

This fee is expected to have several consequences on the H-1B visa system. First, it is to ensure funding for the adequate running of the registration system. It is also expected to lead to a decrease in frivolous registrations, while of course, saving the employer money. It is also expected to provide a more transparent petitioning system as the information will be made public.

 

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  • September 9th, 2019
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