USCIS has published an announcement on its website that the H-1B registration process will commence at on March 9, 2021, at 12:00 pm (ET). The registration process timeline is as follows:
- March 9: H-1B registration process opens at Noon, Eastern Time;
- March 25: H-1B registration process closes at Noon, Eastern Time;
- March 31: Date by which USCIS intends to notify selected registrants; and
- April 1: Earliest date that FY2022 H-1B cap subject petitions may be filed.
USCIS is required by 8 CFR 214.2(h)(8)(iii)(A)(3) to establish an annual initial H-1B registration period that lasts a minimum of 14 calendar days and starts at least 14 calendar days before the earliest date on which H-1B cap-subject petitions may be filed for a particular fiscal year. Accordingly, the latest date that the agency could have begun the registration process for FY2022 is March 18, 2021. USCIS is also required to announce the start and end dates of the initial registration period on its website at least 30 calendar days in advance of the start date of the registration process. By way of background, the H-1B registration process for FY2021 began on March 1, 2020, and concluded on March 20, 2020.
Yesterday, USCIS announced that it will continue to use a random selection process for this year’s H-1B lottery.