Employers and beneficiaries alike are wondering how to check the H1B visa registration results, whether they are selected in the lottery and what the next steps would be. The good news for everyone is that starting with FY2021, the H1 visa lottery system has changed for the better.
Prior to this, the employers had to apply for the H1 visa lottery application on April 1 by submitting a petition along with all the documents for each beneficiary. Starting FY2021, the employer only needs to register any beneficiary between March 1 and March 20 and pay $10 per beneficiary. Then, the employer and beneficiary wait for the lottery selection. If a beneficiary is selected for H1 visa petition, then their employer needs to file documents, which is a much more efficient process.
USCIS Notification for Action
Once USCIS takes any action starting March 21 onwards, they would notify the employer and/or the employer’s appointed attorney by an email that there is an action on their submission. The email does not have any specific information about the employer or the beneficiary, but simply prompts them to login. It would look like the following:
Checking H1B Registration Status
Once the employer or their appointed attorney logs in, under the H-1B Registrations tab, they will see list of all the beneficiaries and their status. A sample screen shot would look like the following:
The following are the possible status values:
- Submitted: This status will update to Selected, Not Selected, or Denied at the end of the selection process.
- Selected: Selected to apply for an H-1B petition.
- Not Selected: Not selected for this registration period.
- Denied: A duplicate registration was submitted by the same registrant for the same beneficiary, or a payment method was declined and not reconciled. If denied as a duplicate registration, all registrations you submitted for this beneficiary for the fiscal year are invalid.
Action is pending for these beneficiaries.
This beneficiary has been selected in the H1B lottery.
Next to each beneficiary that has been selected, there will be a link ‘View Notice’.
The employer may choose to provide a copy of the registration notice to the beneficiary for their record keeping.
The employer or their appointed attorney will be able to get such notices online only. They will not be sent by postal mail, unlike petition-related notices.
This beneficiary has not been selected this year. The same or a different employer can apply for the same beneficiary the next year.
Beneficiary confirmation number
The beneficiary confirmation number is a unique 19-digit identifier associated to each beneficiary in a submitted registration. This number cannot be used to track your case status in Case Status Online.
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Access to Check H1B Registration Selection Process Results
Only the employer or their appointed immigration attorney who have submitted the H1B registration can check the H1B registration selection process results.
The beneficiary cannot check the H1B visa registration results themselves. As the beneficiary, you can check with your employer for the results. Be sure to not be a bother to them by asking frequently if the results have been processed as they likely have many other tasks on hand. Be patient while waiting for the results, it would be best to concentrate on your work and be productive, proving that you’re worth the efforts it takes, especially when millions of Americans are out of a job and there is the possibility pending recession.
An H1B registration number is simply used for the registration purposes. That number is not a case number as there is not petition filed by the employer yet.
If you are selected in the H1B lottery, and once your employer files your H1B petition and USCIS issues a receipt notice (I-797 Notice of Action), it will have a receipt number. You can use this receipt number to check the status of your petition.
Timeline for H1B Registration Results
USCIS is expected to complete the first round of H1B registrations selection by March 31. However, if you are not selected by that date, USCIS may do additional rounds of lottery selections, but the exact timeframe for the future rounds is not known. It can happen at any time from April 1 to September 30, which is the last date of USCIS fiscal year.
As long as the status is ‘Submitted’, you have hope. Once the status is ‘Not Selected’ or ‘Denied’, you know that you are not selected.
USCIS may not release all the selections at once due to various reasons such as denials, duplicates, revokes, etc. That is why multiple rounds are necessary.
Next Steps After Selection
If you are one of the lucky ones selected in the H1B registration lottery, your employer would have to follow the normal H1B petition procedure. The employer has to first file for LCA with the U.S. Department of Labor, and once it is approved, the employer then has to send the H1B visa petition to USCIS between April 1 and June 30.