Understanding Electronic Registration for H-1B Visas

Last Updated on March 15, 2024

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) originally implemented electronic registration at the start of the Fiscal Year (FY) 2021 cap season. It is a critical aspect of the H-1B visa process.  

Since its introduction, electronic registration has transformed and streamlined how foreign nationals and their employers participate in the H-1B process.  

Only after the foreign national beneficiary is registered by a petitioning company, using the electronic system and selected in the lottery, can the employer proceed with submitting the H-1B cap petition. 

What Is Electronic Registration? 

Electronic registration is a process where a foreign national aspiring to hold an H-1B visa is registered by their employer (or prospective employer) through the digital USCIS system, accompanied by a requisite fee. Selection in electronic registration is required before submitting the H-1B cap petition.  

Envoy Global’s platform helps simplify the application process and document gathering. Only those selected in the electronic registration lottery advance to the next stage of the process.  

When Does Electronic Registration Occur? 

The electronic registration period typically begins in March each year, with USCIS notifying registrants if they’re selected by April 1. USCIS communicates specific dates annually, typically early in the new year.  

Staying informed about these dates is crucial for employers and foreign nationals navigating the H-1B lottery process. Envoy’s team ensures that employers and employees receive timely updates on specific deadlines and offers strategic planning to adhere to all timelines.  

H-1B Risk Considerations 

Envoy Global can help you navigate H-1B cap season and other immigration matters by combining a top immigration law firm and a robust technology platform.
Envoy Global can help you navigate H-1B cap season and other immigration matters by combining a top immigration law firm and a robust technology platform.


Start Delays: Unlike the previous one-step, mail-only lottery system, where all H-1B lottery petitions were submitted at the same time, the two-step electronic registration lottery system follows a “first-come, first-served” approach for processing H-1B cap petitions USCIS will announce a filing period for selected registrants, typically April 1 through June 30.  

The longer it takes to submit a petition, the longer it may take to process the petition and the higher the risk of delays in work authorization or the commencement of employment for the foreign national employee. Employers avoid start delays by working wi Envoy Global ensures that start delays are avoided by helping to submit all petitions in a timely manner.

Employer Sanctions: USCIS emphasized the importance of accurate information during registration. Individuals or entities providing false information or submitting frivolous registrations may face sanctions from federal law enforcement agencies for investigation and appropriate action.  

Envoy Global’s Electronic Registration Advice  

Navigating the H-1B visa process through electronic registration requires a thorough understanding of key timelines, risks and responsibilities. Employers and foreign nationals should stay informed about the electronic registration period and adhere to USCIS guidelines to ensure a smooth and successful H-1B visa application experience.  Contact Us for Your H-1B Visa Needs

Envoy is pleased to provide you with this information, which was prepared in Corporate Immigration Partners, P.C., a U.S. law firm who provides services through the Envoy Platform (the “U.S. Law Firm”).  

Content in this publication is for informational purposes only and not intended as legal advice, nor should it be relied on as such. Envoy is not a law firm, and does not provide legal advice. If you would like guidance on how this information may impact your particular situation and you are a client of the U.S. Law Firm, consult your attorney. If you are not a client of the U.S. Law Firm working with Envoy, consult another qualified professional. This website does not create an attorney-client relationship with the U.S. Law Firm.