U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is announcing important filing updates for petitioners who will be requesting additional H-2B workers for fiscal year 2023 under the upcoming temporary final rule. We are announcing these updates prior to publication of the rule in the Federal Register to assist petitioners who begin preparing their petitions in advance.
Centralized Filing Location
Petitioners requesting additional H-2B workers under the upcoming rule must file their petitions at the California Service Center. Under standard processes, H-2B petitions are filed at one of two USCIS service centers, generally based on the state in which the petitioner’s primary office is located. All filings under the supplemental allocations will now be centralized at the California Service Center in order to manage the additional workload from the supplemental allocations provided by this rule. Petitions filed under the supplemental allocations in this rule at any location other than the California Service Center will be rejected and the filing fees will be returned.
This change in filing locations for petitions filed under the supplemental allocations in the upcoming rule does not affect the filing locations for petitions that are filed under permanent H-2B regulations, whether they are cap-subject or cap-exempt.
Temporary Suspension of Premium Processing
Immediately upon publication of the upcoming rule, we are temporarily suspending the availability of premium processing for H-2B supplemental cap petitions.
We will resume premium processing for H-2B supplemental cap petitions on Jan. 3, 2023. Until premium processing resumes for H-2B supplemental cap petitions, we will reject any Form I-907 concurrently filed with a Form I-129 filed under the supplemental allocations in the upcoming rule.
Petitioners filing H-2B supplemental cap petitions will be eligible to upgrade to premium processing by filing Form I-907 once premium processing resumes on Jan. 3, 2023. Please do not file a request to upgrade to premium processing until you have received a receipt notice and can submit your request with the receipt number for your H-2B petition. If you request an upgrade to premium processing and have not provided this information, we will reject your Form I-907 and return the filing fee.
At this time, premium processing remains available for all other H-2B petitions, such as extension of stay requests.