USCIS published its Improving the H-1B Registration Selection Process and Program Integrity final rule on Feb. 2, 2024. The new final rule has three basic categories: creating a beneficiary-centric selection process, specifically allowing for start date flexibility, and other enhancements to the integrity of the selection process.

This is the first phase of final rules

Many USCIS filing fees are being adjusted upward beginning on April 1, 2024. That date, of course, is particularly significant. It is the earliest date that Cap H-1Bs can be filed.

The H-1B filing fee, for example, will rise from $460 to $780. The ACWIA Fee (to fund the training of U.S. workers) and the

USCIS announced the extension and redesignation of Syria for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for 18 months from April 1, 2024, to Sept. 30, 2025. The redesignation is based on the continuing civil war and the accompanying dire humanitarian consequences taking place in Syria.

Individuals who are already in Syrian TPS must apply for the extension

The increasing need for talented workers in the United States has more and more employers considering eliminating bachelor’s degree requirements from job descriptions. A recognition of the value of skills and experience over formal education may be driving the trend. See our full article on these issues and considerations here.

USCIS previously deferred its proposed filing fee increase until early 2024 – and the increase might be coming out very soon! This increase will come on top of the increased premium processing fees that will go into effect on Feb. 26, 2024. The premium processing fee increase is approximately 12%. Some of the proposed general

 The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has changed its policy manual to make it easier to find and understand all the regulations regarding nonimmigrant students in F and M status. The new guidance consolidates the existing policies and clarifies issues of eligibility, school transfers, practical training and on-and off-campus employment. It provides more transparency

The Department of State (DOS) will begin a pilot program for issuing nonimmigrant visas inside the United States on Jan. 29, 2024. The pilot program will be available to a narrowly defined class of nonimmigrants for a limited period. Once the proof of concept is demonstrated, the DOS plans to continue and expand the stateside

Premium processing will become more expensive starting on February 26, 2024. According to USCIS, it is raising the fees to adjust for inflation.

The newly generated income, estimated to be approximately $185 million, will be used to respond to adjudication demands and reduce processing times throughout the agency.

USCIS has been rolling out premium

In response to the Executive Order (EO) on Artificial Intelligence, on December 21, 2023, the Department of Labor (DOL) issued a request for information in the Federal Register asking for public comment on possible additions to the Schedule A list, including more STEM or non-STEM fields.

On October 30, 2023, as part of the EO

USCIS has announced that it is extending the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) re-registration periods for El Salvador, Haiti, Honduras, Nepal, Nicaragua, and Sudan from 60 days to the end of the full 18-month extension period.

The dates are as follows:

  • Nepal                  June