US Citizenship and Immigration Services has updated its count of FY 2013 cap-subject H-1B petitions and advanced degree cap-exempt petitions. As of May 18, 2012, approximately 42,000 H-1B cap-subject petitions were receipted and 16,000 H-1B petitions were receipted for beneficiaries with advanced degrees.
Congress has mandated an annual cap of 65,000 H-1B visas, with an additional 20,000 visas available for beneficiaries with advanced degrees from US colleges or universities. It should be noted that H-1B visa petitions filed on behalf of current workers who have been counted previously against the H-1B visa cap will not be included toward the annual cap set by Congress. Furthermore, pursuant to the free trade agreements with Chile and Singapore, 6,800 H-1B visas are available exclusively to Chile and Singapore nationals. This effectively reduces the total allotment of available H-1B visas to 58,200.
At the current rate, we expect this year’s allotment of new H-1B visas to be exhausted within the next few weeks. Thereafter, filings for new H-1B visas will resume on April 1, 2013 for employment commencing no earlier than October 1, 2013.
Squire Sanders will keep you updated on this development and other immigration topics. For more information regarding any topic in this publication or immigration in general, please contact your principal Squire Sanders lawyer or one of the individuals listed in this publication.