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The H-2B cap has been reached for the second half of the fiscal year

On February 26, USCIS published an announcement that the cap on H-2B petitions for the second half of fiscal year 2020 has been met. Any petitions filed after February 18 with requested employment start dates before October 1, 2020 will be rejected.

USCIS announced the countries eligible for the H-2A and H-2B visa programs.

USCIS published the list of countries whose nationals are eligible for the H-2A and H-2B visa programs, which allow foreign workers to fill temporary agricultural and nonagricultural jobs. The list of countries is unchanged from the 2019 eligibility list.

H‑2B Petitioners Must Include Temporary Labor Certification Final Determination with USCIS Form I‑129

USCIS announced that employers whose H‑2B application was processed in FLAG must include a printed copy of the electronic one-page “final determination” of their H‑2B temporary labor certification approval when submitting Form I‑129, Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker. Employers must also ensure that the DOL Case Number identified on the final determination is the same as the ETA Case Number provided in Part 5, Item 2 of Form

USCIS Announces Cap Reached for Additional H-2B Visas for FY2019

USCIS announced that it received enough petitions to reach the additional maximum 30,000 visas made available under the May 8, 2019, temporary final rule for returning workers under the H‑2B cap for FY2019. USCIS will reject and return any cap-subject petitions and accompanying filing fees received after June 5, 2019.

DOL Will Only Accept Electronic Filings of Form ETA 9141 via FLAG System’

As of today, DOL only accepts electronic filings of Form ETA 9141, Application for Prevailing Wage Determination, through the new Foreign Labor Application Gateway (FLAG) System. Furthermore, beginning Thursday, June 13, 2019, H‑2B applications will be accepted via FLAG, and on July 3, 2019, all H‑2B applications must be sumbmitted via FLAG

DOL Publishes Notice of Updates to Procedures for Processing H‑2B Applications

The DOL Office of Foreign Labor Certification (OFLC) published notice in the Federal Register that all applications filed on or after July 3, 2019, will be randomly ordered for processing based on the date of filing and the start date of work requested. The public may submit comments on these changes through April 2, 2019.

DHS Publishes Notice of Eligible H‑2A and H‑2B Countries for 2019

DHS published notice in the Federal Register of the 84 countries whose nationals are eligible to participate in the H‑2A program and the 81 countries whose nationals are eligible to participate in the H‑2B program for the coming year. The designations in the notice are effective from January 19, 2019, and shall be without effect after January 18, 2020.

DHS Publishes Notice of Eligible H‑2A and H‑2B Countries for 2019

DHS published notice in the Federal Register of the 84 countries whose nationals are eligible to participate in the H‑2A program and the 81 countries whose nationals are eligible to participate in the H‑2B program for the coming year. The designations in the notice are effective from January 19, 2019, and shall be without effect after January 18, 2020.

DOL Provides Update on H‑2B Processing

DOL posted an update on H‑2B processing, including information on how date and time stamps were assigned and why some users continued to see an outage banner after the iCERT system was restored on January 7, 2019.

DOL Issues Reminder Regarding H-2B Application Filing Timelines

The Department of Labor’s Office of Foreign Labor Certification (OFLC) reminds employers and other interested stakeholders that H-2B Applications for Temporary Employment Certification, Form ETA-9142B, with April 1, 2019, start dates may be filed no earlier than January 1, 2019 at 12:00:00.000 a.m. Eastern Time

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