Immigration Update: Start Planning Now for 2018 H-1B Visa Cap Season
Each year, demand for the H-1B nonimmigrant visa greatly exceeds the supply. In 2017, employers filed 199,000 petitions for just 85,000 visas. And, under the Trump Administration, that number is likely not going to increase any time soon.
- Identify open positions and potential beneficiaries (such as F-1 employees on OPT that will expire in the next year);
- Review job duties and update job descriptions if necessary;
- Obtain prevailing wage information for the position;
- Begin gathering necessary documents from the foreign national; and
- Prepare a financial analysis and budget.
Employers should work closely with legal counsel early in the process to ensure the position qualifies under the H-1B program and that candidates meet the qualifications. Your attorney can also explore alternative visa options given the chances that the petition may not be selected in the lottery. Finally, starting to prepare now will at least reduce the stress that always accompanies the H-1B cap season.