April 8, 2015
For the third straight year, the H-1B Cap has been filled in the first week in which cap-subject H-1B petitions are accepted (April 1 – 7). USCIS will run a random lottery to determine which of the petitions received during this week will be accepted under the cap and processed.
The current annual cap on H-1B admissions is 65,000 workers, plus an additional 20,000 for holders of U.S. Master’s degrees or higher. Last year USCIS received 172,500 cap-subject petitions for these 85,000 available slots – an all time record. Most expect that record to be easily broken again this year, meaning well under 50% of petitions will even be processed. With the economy continuing to improve (especially relative to other advanced economies), there is no reason to think next year will be any different – baring an act of congress to raise the cap to meet the sustained demand.
Cap-exempt employers – including colleges and universities and related or affiliated non-profit entities, non-profit research organizations, and governmental research organizations – are free to file an H-B petition at any time of the year.
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