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US H-1B visas for international guest workers Registration for fiscal 2025 closes shortly.

The USCIS has announced a number of modifications to the H-1B visa process, including an increase in registration costs and the implementation of a lottery system. These adjustments seek to strengthen the integrity of the scheme and reduce possible fraud.

Written by Thelearnvine

The registration time for H-1B visas for fiscal 2025 will expire at 12 noon Eastern Time on March 22, according to an announcement from the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). During this registration period, potential petitioners and their legal agents must utilize a USCIS online account to register each beneficiary electronically and pay the related registration cost.

The online account also allows users to cooperate on registrations and petitions. Forms I-129 and I-907, necessary for H-1B petitions and applications for premium processing service, are now available in USCIS online accounts.

Online filing of applications for H-1B cap petitions will resume on April 1. The USCIS will notify applicants when non-cap H-1B applications can be filed online. They are urged to register and pay the registration cost electronically for each beneficiary, as notified by the federal office on March 18.

The USCIS also noted that the notification for online filing of non-cap H-1B applications will be announced later. The H-1B visa scheme is undergoing substantial reforms aimed at boosting the programme's integrity and minimizing fraud.

From April 1, visa costs will be $110, up from $10. This is the first hike since 2016. The fee to register for an H-1B visa has also increased from $10 to $215. The FY 2025 H-1B cap adds a lottery method to provide fair possibilities for each recipient and to combat fraud.

The US initiated a trial project for domestic renewal of some work visas in 2023, enabling 20,000 applicants to renew their visas. However, H1B workers' spouses can't renew their visas without leaving the country.

Start with the FY 2025 first-time registration session, USCIS will require registrants to supply valid passport or traveling document data for each beneficiary. Some applications subject to the congressionally mandated H-1B cap can now be filed with employment start dates extending October 1 of the relevant fiscal year.

The final rule also permits USCIS to dismiss or revoke petitions when the underlying registration had a fraudulent attestation or was otherwise invalid.

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