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Immigration Law Blog

Thursday, April 20, 2017

USCIS Announces Completion of FY 2018 H-1B Cap Selection Process

On April 7, 2017, USCIS announced that it had received a sufficient number of H-1B Cap petitions to reach the statutory cap of 65,000 visas as well as to meet the U.S. advanced degree exemption (Master’s Cap) which sets aside an additional 20,000 visas for applicants who have a Master’s degree or higher from a U.S. college or university.

This year, USCIS received 199,000 H-1B cap petitions during the filing period which is down from 236,000 received last year. At the end of the filing period, USCIS used a computer-generated random selection process (or lottery) to select enough petitions to meet the cap. The U.S. advanced degree exemption petitions were selected first. The remaining U.S. advanced degree petitions were then made part of the selection process for the regular cap. USCIS will now begin returning all unselected petitions with filing fees, unless a petition is found to be a duplicate filing.

USCIS will continue to accept and process H-1B petitions that are not subject to the cap, including requests for change of employer or terms of employment, extension of status, and requests for concurrent work. However, as previously announced on March 3, 2017, USCIS’ Premium Processing Service remains suspended for up to six months.

More information can be found at https://www.uscis.gov/news/alerts/uscis-completes-h-1b-cap-random-selection-process-fy-2018.


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