On May 20, 2019, USCIS will begin premium processing for cap-subject H-1B cases that were filed concurrently with Form I-907 premium processing requests. Under the Premium Processing Service, USCIS guarantees 15-calendar-day processing. That means the first premium processing adjudications should start coming out by the end of May or beginning of June.
This is the first stage in USCIS’ “two-phased approach.” During the first phase, USCIS will premium process only cap-subject cases that are requesting a change of status. Any change of status petitions that were filed without requests for premium processing may request premium processing with an interfiling beginning May 20, 2019. The second phase, premium processing for all other cap-subject H-1B petitions, will not begin before June 2019.
At this time, premium processing for H-1B petitions that are exempt from the cap, such as extension of stay requests, remains available.
Between May 20 and June 3, 2019, USCIS will not use pre-paid mailers to send out final notices regarding cases that are premium processed. Instead, regular mail will be used. USCIS states that this method will be faster and more efficient, given the surge of applications, since the use of regular mail is automated, whereas using pre-paid mailers requires a manual process. How long this will continue is not known, although USCIS plans to start using pre-paid mailers after June 3rd, if operationally feasible.
Please contact Jackson Lewis if you have any questions.