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  4.  » The Weekly Pulse: USCIS & Immigration Updates – What You Need to Know

Since President Joseph R. Biden, Jr. and Kamala D. Harris took office there has been waves of much needed changes in the immigration and naturalization process and policies from: the immigration reform bill, to the reintroduction of the DACA act, the new pathway to citizenship, and much more. Today, we are bringing you vital information about the recent updated to the citizenship examination and H1-B registration.

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently announced that the H1-B electronic registration process will open at noon EST on Tuesday, March 9, 2021 and will close at noon on EST Thursday, March 25, 2021. All H-1B cap cases must be entered into the electronic registration system during this time period to be eligible for this year’s lottery. USCIS also announced that there will be no changes to this year’s H-1B cap selection process as the implementation of the “H-1B Cap Selection Process Final Rule” which has now been delayed until December 31, 2021.

Last year, USCIS implemented an electronic registration process to obtain initial information from employers in order to conduct an electronic-based H1-B cap selection process. Instead of filing the entire H-1B petition with all filing fees during the five business days of April and then conducting the H1-B cap lottery process, USCIS changed the cap selection process to use an electronic registration system. However, limited information about the employer and employee is entered into the registration system. After the registration period closes and prior to April 1, USCIS will conduct the cap selection process. Once the cap selection process has been completed, USCIS will notify all selected registrants, who can then file the H1-B cap petition between April 1 and June 30, 2021. As in years past, it’s possible that the premium processing service may be temporarily suspended for H-1B cap cases. If selected and H-1B petition is eventually approved thereafter, the employee can begin temporary employment as of October 1, 2021. If you are interested in seeing more information about this year’s H-1B cap selection process, here are some links we’ve provided for you:

The civics test is a portion of the United States Naturalization test that needs to be completed in order to pass and obtain American citizenship. Recently the civics test was updated and will be given to anyone who applied for citizenship after December 1, 2020. The new test is more difficult than the former version of the test. The new test can make it harder for some immigrants to become citizens thus ultimately suppressing the number of immigrants who are able to vote. The update version of the test was first administered on March 1st and there will be a brief period which the agency may offer both versions of the test to accommodate applicants who were already studying for the former version of the test. 

If you have any questions or concerns regarding the citizenship test, which version you will have to take, or how to study, contact one of our experienced immigration team members. For more information regarding Immigration & Naturalization law, The Law Offices of Marjory Cajoux is here to answer your immigration-related questions. You can depend on us to stay ahead of immigration developments and keep you informed.

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