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News Flash: USCIS May Reopen Denied H-1B Petitions

On Friday, March 12, 2021, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced it may reopen, and possibly reconsider, previously revoked or denied H-1B petitions (Form I-129).

Who is Eligible?

To be eligible for consideration, a motion to reopen and/or reconsider a denied H-1B petition must:

  1. Be filed before the end of the validity period requested on the original petition or labor condition application; and
  2. Confirm that the decision was based on one or more policies in the three rescinded H-1B memoranda.
How Do I Submit a Motion to Reopen an H-1B Case?

Form I-290B (Notice of Appeal or Motion) must be filed, along with the $675 filing fee, by the petitioner wishing to reopen their denied H-1B petition. Beneficiaries cannot file this motion, unless instructed by USCIS and as permitted by law.

When Should I File?

A motion to reopen may be filed more than 30 days after the previous decision, but USCIS will use its discretion to accept such a motion. Basically, filing a motion does not guarantee it will be reopened for review.

NOTE: The window to file the motion to reopen is limited.

In January, 2021, USCIS provided an extension, indicating it will consider Form I-129B (Notice of Appeal or Motion) if:

  1. The form was filed up to 60 calendar days from the issuance of the USCIS decision; and
  2. The decision was made anytime between March 1, 2020 and March 31, 2021.

Normally, Form I-129B (Notice of Appeal or Motion) must be filed within 30 days of an adverse decision by the USCIS. The extension of time to 60 days is in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and is likely to be renewed beyond March 31, 2021. In addition, for H-1B petitions that fall outside this 60-day rule (referred to as “untimely motions”), USCIS is likely to use its discretion and allow such cases to be reopened if the denials were based on any of the rescinded policies.

Don’t Miss Your Chance to File

Timing is very important with this motion; therefore, it is a good idea to works with an experienced immigration attorney to make sure you comply with all the filing deadlines. The deadlines will vary based on your individual case.

Our attorneys at Sam Shihab & Associates, located in Dublin, Ohio and Irving, Texas, can help you review your H-1B case and work with you to assess your eligibility to file a motion to reopen your denied H-1B petition.

Contact us today!

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