New H1B Lottery System in April 2019 – H1B 2020 season

Anil Gupta  30 Jan, 19      0  Featured USA USA News

H1B Lottery – DHS Proposes New System starting April 2019

Jan 30, 2019 – DHS has approved the new “Merit based” H1B April 2019 lottery system to start from April 1, 2019.

  1. Online H1B registration suspended for H1B 2020 season
    Online Registration will be first tested and start from next year i.e. April 2020. 
  2. H1B Lottery Draw April 2019
    You have to file normal regular paper based H1B application starting 1 April 2019.

H1B Lottery favors US Master Degree in April 2019

As per USCIS testing, the proposed process would result in an estimated increase of up to 16 percent (or 5,340 workers) in the number of selected H-1B with a master’s degree or higher from a U.S. institution of higher education.

H1B lottery changes
H1B lottery changes

To achieve this, USCIS plans to reverse the order of lottery draw:

  1. First run the lottery for 65K from the entire pool of H1B applications and then run it for 20k US degree holders.
  2. Then, those applicants with advanced degrees that did not get selected in the first round would move into a second round, where 20k additional visas would be awarded.

Indian Masters Degree H1B Lottery

H1B applicants, who are primarily from India and China should be aware of this change in H-1B cap rule system which would potentially reduce chances of selection for people with non-“U.S.” Master or Higher Degrees in FY 2020 cap season.

As per QZ analysis, new proposed H1B Lottery does favor US masters degree holders. The effect has been tested on last couple of years H1B lottery too.
This proposed system will further reduce the chances of Bachelor degree holders for a selection in lottery.

Year / Chances of Selection in H1B LotteryUS Masters degree holdersOthers (Like India / China Degree holders)
201851% (current system) → 55% (proposed system)38% → 34%
201741% → 43%30% → 28%
201642% → 45%31% → 28%
201556% → 61%43% → 38%
201474% → 84%63% → 52%

The proposed rule is still not finalized and hence, may or may not be implemented in April 2019 for H1B season starting Oct 1, 2019 (H1B 2020 season).

The USCIS director Cissna has given interviews at various occasions to signal that they indeed want this new system to be used starting April 2019.

UnSelected H1B Applicants Can Get Second Chance

Un-selected H1B applications would remain on waiting list in the same H1b season. If USCIS needs to increase the number of registrations projected to meet the regular cap or advanced degree exemption, USCIS would select from waiting list. USCIS may also re-open the registration period (will be announced separately) if additional registrations are needed to meet the new projected amount.

Submit Multiple Registration for Same H1B worker?

As the electronic registration system is not applicable for H1B cap Season 2020, the electronic system details will be updated as and when it is published by DHS and USCIS.

Source: Federal Register

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