USCIS resumes premium processing on February 19, 2019 for all H-1B petitions filed on or before December 21, 2018. Those wishing to upgrade their petition to premium must submit the request to the service center that is currently handling the petition. Premium Process is unavailable for Petitions filed on or after December 22, 2018.


  • Premium upgrade is applicable only for H-1B Petitions filed on or before December 21, 2018;
  • Petitioners who received a transfer notice on their pending H-1B petition must upgrade their petitions to premium processing, by submitting a copy of the transfer notice along with their premium request, to avoid possible delays;
  • Petitioners who received an RFE, must submit their RFE response along with the premium processing request;
  • If the petition was transferred and the premium processing request is sent to the wrong service center, USCIS will forward it to the petition’s current location;
  • Premium requests must be sent to the service center currently handling their petition.

On September 11, 2018, Premium Processing was temporarily suspended to clear the backlogs of applications on H-1B Visas. On January 28, 2019, USCIS resumed premium processing for FY 2019 H-1B cap-subject petitions, including those eligible for the advanced degree exemption. Premium remains available for extension petitions. From February 19, 2019, USCIS is resuming Premium Processing for all H-1Bs filed before December 21, 2018. USCIS is planning to resume premium processing for the remaining categories of H-1B petitions as agency workloads permit

GLF will continue to follow further developments in this matter and we will provide updates through our Newsletter as and when they become available.

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