The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services indicated during a September 27, 2017, call with the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) that it is on track to resume offering its Premium Processing service on or before October 3, 2017, to all H-1B petitions.
While no "official" announcement has been made by the agency, the recent statement during an AILA government liaison meeting is welcome news for employers who have experienced long wait times for adjudication of H-1B petitions filed on behalf of their employees.
Under Premium Processing, the USCIS has 15 calendar days to either approve, deny or request additional evidence. If the USCIS does not meet the 15-day deadline, the Premium Processing fee of $1,225 must be returned. H-1B filings made without a request for Premium Processing, or called "regular" processing, can take four to five months or longer under current processing times.
Once the USCIS confirms that Premium Processing is available, H-1Bs initially filed without a request for Premium Processing can be "upgraded" by submission of Form I-907 along with $1,225 fee.
The International Practice Group of Garvey Schubert Barer is a cross-disciplinary group of attorneys practicing in areas ranging from business transactions, immigration, maritime, government regulatory work, transportation and logistics, and estate planning. The group members include bilingual and multicultural attorneys who are well-versed in handling these subject matters in a cross-border context. The firm’s attorneys have been actively practicing in the international arena since the early 1970s.