On December 3, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) proposed a new change to the H-1B visa filing process. This proposed rule would require employers to register candidates online for visas two weeks before the application deadline of April 1. Only accepted submissions are allowed to submit a full application. The new process would also flip the order in which the petitions are reviewed, which would favor candidates with a U.S. master’s degree or higher.
"The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and this administration are intensely focused on reforming employment visa programs so they benefit Americans to the greatest extent possible," U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services spokesman Michael Bars said in an emailed statement. The application process aims to reduce the overall costs for businesses of highly skilled foreign workers and decrease the administrative burden of processing thousands of applications.
The rule is yet to be finalized. Despite uncertainties, the best course of action is to stay informed.