U.S. Alert – Premium Processing temporarily suspended for all H-1B petitions

USCIS announced that starting on April 3, 2017, they will temporarily suspend premium processing for all H-1B petitions. This suspension may last up to 6 months.[1]  Currently, under regular processing, it can take six months or longer for an application to be reviewed. The Premium Processing Service provides expedited processing for certain employment-based petitions and applications. Specifically, USCIS guarantees 15 calendar day processing to those petitioners or applicants who choose to use this service or USCIS will refund the Premium Processing Service fee.  While H-1B premium processing is suspended, petitioners will not be able to file Form I-907, Request for Premium Processing Service for a Form I-129, Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker which requests the H-1B nonimmigrant classification. USCIS will notify the public before resuming premium processing for H-1B petitions.

The temporary suspension applies to all H-1B petitions filed on or after April 3, 2017. Since cap-subject H-1B petitions filed this year for Fiscal Year 2018 could not be filed before April 3, 2017, this suspension will apply to all petitions filed for the FY18 H-1B regular cap and master’s advanced degree cap exemption (the “master’s cap”).

The temporary suspension of premium processing does not apply to other eligible nonimmigrant classifications filed on Form I-129.

[1] https://www.uscis.gov/news/alerts/uscis-will-temporarily-suspend-premium-processing-all-h-1b-petitions

Alert by: Melissa Winkler