Update on Cap-Subject H-1B Petitions

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On April 2, 2012, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) began accepting new H-1B petitions against the annual H-1B cap for Fiscal Year 2013. USCIS announced yesterday that 22,323 cap-subject H-1B petitions have been received since April 2, 2012. Approximately 25% of these petitions are for individuals qualifying for the “Master’s cap” with advanced degrees from U.S. educational institutions. This represents a sharp increase in demand for H-1B visas over last year. For comparison to last year, during the first week of April 2011 USCIS received only 10,400 new H-1B petitions toward the H-1B cap. The spike in demand for H-1B visas this early in the year is a strong indication that H-1B visa numbers will almost certainly be exhausted in the summer.

If you have employees who require H-1B sponsorship this year (e.g., employees working pursuant to F-1 Optional Practical Training, or employees working in J-1, L-1, and/or TN visa status who may need H-1B classification as a step to securing a green card), please contact us to discuss initiation of the H-1B petition process as soon as possible. Congress has placed a strict numerical cap or limit on the number of H-1B visas that are available annually. Specifically, 65,000 new H-1B visas are available each year, with an additional 20,000 visas reserved for applicants holding advanced degrees from U.S. educational institutions.

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Published In: Immigration Updates, Labor & Employment Updates

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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