Employers who wish to hire foreign specialty workers should immediately consider preparations for filing their petitions in April to sponsor H-1B workers for fiscal year 2014, which starts on Oct. 1, 2013. A flurry of early filings are expected again this year, and some prognosticators have suggested that the number of available slots could be filled by the end of May. The regulatory doors are “open” as of April 1, 2013.
Petitions must be filed promptly in order to avoid being shut down by the annual cap limitation for the H-1B program (the cap amount of 65,000 entrants was filled by June of last year). Some petitions will be exempt from the cap if they are made on behalf of certain individuals who have obtained an advanced U.S. degree, but the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services grant that exemption only to the first 20,000 applicants who qualify for it.
Up to 6,800 visas may also be set aside for workers from Chile and Singapore, pursuant to the H-1B1 program arising out of the U.S.-Chile and U.S.-Singapore Free Trade Agreements.
H-1B petitions in order to be properly filed, must be complete and accurate. Necessary documents include:
- A Form I-129 petition with appropriate supplements;
- Labor condition applications on Form ETA 9035;
- Required evidence of a beneficiary’s educational background;
- Duplicate copies of certain documents; and
- Consulate-specific forms required by the Department of State where appropriate.
If you are in need of assistance with a business immigration matter, please do not hesitate to contact our office at (847) 564-0712. You can also check out our immigration law Website for more information on we might assist you.