h1b visa new vs old registration lottery process
H1B Visa

New H1B Visa 2021 Process vs Old Lottery [Visual Guide]

New H1B Visa 2021 season and Pre-Registration for Cap-Subject H1B Visa Quota will open from March 1, 2020.

New H1B Visa Registration System = New Process and Deadlines. 

USCIS is yet to publish the URL for the H1B Registration Tool. But, you can get a see how to tool looks – H1B Visa Registration Tool Screenshots.

The following visual comparison should paint a better picture of this New H1B Visa Lottery Process that requires Registration.

H1B Visa 2021 vs. Old Lottery Process

The articles about H1B Visa 2021 has the same information, but some folks will find the visual comparison much easier to understand.


Have you got questions about this comparison? Add a comment to this article.

  • Travel: Yes (COS will be Abandonded) – What does that mean?

COS stands for Change of Status.

Note: You have to talk to your Immigration Attorney about travel while H1B Visa is pending. Only they will be able to give the correct recommendation based on your work needs and background.

If you are already living in the USA with a valid Visa (like F1 Visa OPT, STEM OPT, H4, etc.), your employer (or Immigration Attorney) may apply for the H1B visa with Change of Status.

Here’s Page 2 of Form I-129, where Change of Status will be requested.

h1b change of status form i129


So, what does Change of Status Abandonded mean?

According to USCIS, a person traveling outside the USA when the Change of Status petition is pending means that a person is no longer interested in changing to a new status.

So, what happens to the actual H1B Visa petition.

USCIS would still process the H1B Visa petition and approve your H1B visa petition, but deny automatic status change from F1 to H1B or H4 to H1B.

Note – Talk to your immigration attorney handing the H1B petition and clearly understand the implications of this.

Some folks think that Travel = H1B Visa petition Denial.

That’s not the case . USCIS could approve H1B Visa with Consular Processing.

Warning About Cap-Gap: New article will be posted on this. 

Applying for H1B Visa? Read the following articles:


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  1. According to new rules, can I travel between March to March 31st. I see that is the lottery time and moreover we are not filing for any COS? Please give me some advices on this area. Thanks in advance!

  2. Can you apprise about COS from H1B to F1 ? Is that advised to extend duration of stay in US – if so how much time it takes and what are the travel restrictions ?

  3. Do we start with the LCA procedure after we get picked for the h1b under the new registration process or do we keep the LCA already ready even before registering under the new process

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