U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) just announced that it will resume premium processing for certain cap-exempt H-1B petitions, effective immediately. USCIS confirmed that starting today, July 24th, 2017, it will resume premium processing for the following H-1B petitioners:

  • Institutions of higher education;
  • Nonprofits related to or affiliated with an institution of higher education;
  • Nonprofit research or governmental research organizations; and,
  • Individuals who are “employed at” a cap exempt Petitioner, as listed above. USCIS has a specific set of regulations governing which beneficiaries meet the “employed at” requirement, but those beneficiaries often include physicians in private practice who primarily provide medical care at cap-exempt hospitals, such as university-affiliated teaching hospitals.

USCIS’ announcement to again offer premium processing for these cap-exempt petitioners adds to its previous announcement on June 26th, 2017, permitting petitioners filing H-1B petitions on behalf of physicians under the Conrad 30 waiver program and interested government agency waivers to premium process.

The resumption of premium processing for these H-1B petitions applies to both new petition filings and “upgrades” to premium processing for already filed and pending H-1B Petitions. USCIS also stated that it intends to resume premium processing to other petitions as workload permits. If you have questions about the resumption of premium processing for cap-exempt H-1B petitioners, please contact SPS Immigration PLLC.