On June 20, the USCIS Ombudsman office held a teleconference on H-1B petition processing to discuss various topics, including premium processing. Premium processing for H-1B petitions had been suspended in mid-March of this year so that resources could be focused on processing current petitions. During the call, USCIS stated that it would bring back premium processing incrementally. On June 26, it resumed premium processing for all H-1B petitions filed for medical doctors under the Conrad 30 Waiver program.

Just today, USCIS announced that it would resume premium processing for certain cap-exempt petitions, effective immediately. Premium processing will resume for the following petitions, if the H-1B petitioner is:

  • An institution of higher education;
  • A nonprofit related to or affiliated with an institution of higher education; or
  • A nonprofit research or governmental research organization.

Premium processing will also resume for petitions that may also be exempt if the beneficiary will be employed at a qualifying cap-exempt institution, organization, or entity. This is a further step in USCIS “incrementally” bringing back premium processing for H-1B petitions.