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HomeBig DataOught to co-founders on OPT, STEM OPT pursue H-1Bs? – TechCrunch

Ought to co-founders on OPT, STEM OPT pursue H-1Bs? – TechCrunch

​​Right here’s one other version of “Expensive Sophie,” the recommendation column that solutions immigration-related questions on working at expertise corporations.

“Your questions are very important to the unfold of data that permits individuals everywhere in the world to rise above borders and pursue their desires,” says Sophie Alcorn, a Silicon Valley immigration lawyer. “Whether or not you’re in individuals ops, a founder or searching for a job in Silicon Valley, I’d like to reply your questions in my subsequent column.”

TechCrunch+ members obtain entry to weekly “Expensive Sophie” columns; use promo code ALCORN to buy a one- or two-year subscription for 50% off.

Expensive Sophie,

My two co-founders and I are on OPT and STEM OPT. We’re all from India and are contemplating the H-1B lottery.

How can we construction our immigration compliance? Any recommendation for planning?

— Tenacious Trio

A composite image of immigration law attorney Sophie Alcorn in front of a background with a TechCrunch logo.

Picture Credit: Joanna Buniak / Sophie Alcorn (opens in a brand new window)

Expensive Tenacious,

Thanks for reaching out to me along with your questions. Earlier than I dive into them — and for a little bit of context — right here is a few background on the annual H-1B lottery.


H-1B lottery 101

In 2020, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Companies (USCIS) applied a brand new digital registration course of for the H-1B. That started a brand new course of during which employers register every H-1B candidate on-line and pay a $10 registration payment. Earlier than 2020, employers had been required to submit a accomplished H-1B petition for every candidate — a really expensive and time-consuming course of.

The simpler and more cost effective digital H-1B lottery course of is great however resulted in a dramatic rise within the variety of lottery registrants. This 12 months, USCIS obtained 483,927 registrations, a 57% enhance from 2021. Yearly, 85,000 H-1B visas can be found within the lottery — 20,000 for people with a grasp’s diploma or increased and 65,000 for these with a bachelor’s diploma. On condition that Congress has not elevated the variety of H-1B visas out there within the lottery, the possibilities of being chosen within the lottery dropped to about 23% in 2022 from about 32% in 2019.



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