With the new registration system firmly in place for the H-1B 2021 filing season, the USCIS has just completed its first lottery using this format. Rather than filing petitions as before, prospective petitioners submitted registrations through the USCIS’ online portal in order to enter beneficiaries into the lottery. The window to submit these registrations opened on March 1st and, as of March 27th, the lottery results have been posted. Those selected in the lottery should expect to receive a notification from the USCIS by March 31st.

How Will I Know If My Registration Was Selected?

In order to know if your registration has been selected in the 2021 lottery, you will need to log into your profile on the USCIS online portal where you submitted your petition. There, you can see the status of each beneficiary that you have registered. At this point in the process, you will see one of four statuses applied to your registrations:

  • Selected: Congratulations! This means that your registration was selected in the lottery and you can move on to filing a petition after the first business day in April.
  • Denied: This means that your registration was removed from consideration due to ineligibility. This can happen because you submitted multiple registrations for the same beneficiary or you used an invalid payment method for the $10 registration fee. 
  • Submitted: Some, if not most registrations remain as “Submitted” even now that the lottery was conducted. This means that your registration was not selected in the initial lottery, but it will remain in consideration until the end of the fiscal year (October 1st) in case one of the selected beneficiaries is denied or rejected during the petitioning process.

At the end of the 2020 fiscal year, all eligible registrations (meaning those that weren’t denied) that were not chosen in the initial cap or chosen to replace a denied or rejected petitioner will be marked as “Not Selected.” In this case, you must wait until the following cap season to try again. Remember that you may only file a petition if your registration says “Selected”. If your registration says “Submitted” and you still file a petition, it will not be accepted and you will not be eligible for a refund of your fees.

How VisaNation Law Group Immigration Attorneys Can Help

Entering and being selected in the lottery is only the first step in the H-1B process. There are many more steps to come including gathering necessary supporting documents, filing a petition, and handling potential, and even likely, Requests for Evidence (RFEs). With the scrutiny for H-1B cases increasing with each passing year, more and more cases are receiving RFEs or being outright denied.

However, with the help of an experienced immigration attorney, you can help ensure that your H-1B petition has the best chance of receiving approval. Here at Visa Nation, we have a team of H-1B lawyers with decades of experience handling a wide range of cases, including complex ones. The H-1B lottery may be up to chance, but your petition doesn’t have to be. To contact a VisaNation Law Group attorney you can schedule an appointment by filling out this consultation form.