Few H-1B Petitions Filed So Far
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced on April 22, 2010, that it continues to accept H-1B nonimmigrant petitions subject to the fiscal year (FY) 2011 cap. USCIS will monitor the number of petitions received for both the 65,000 general cap and the 20,000 U.S. master’s degree or higher educational exemption.
USCIS has received approximately 16,025 H-1B petitions counting toward the 65,000 cap. The agency has received approximately 6,740 petitions for individuals with advanced degrees. This is lower than the number of H-1B petitions USCIS had received by the same date in 2009. If this trend continues, H-1B numbers may be available for some time.
When USCIS receives the necessary number of petitions to meet the cap, it will issue a public update that the FY 2011 H-1B cap has been met as of a certain date (the “final receipt date”). The final receipt date will be based on the date USCIS physically receives the petition, not the date that the petition has been postmarked. The date USCIS informs the public that the cap has been reached may differ from the actual final receipt date.
USCIS said it may randomly select the number of petitions required to reach the numerical limit from the petitions received on the final receipt date. USCIS will reject cap-subject petitions that are not selected, as well as those received after the final receipt date.
For cases filed for premium processing during the initial five-day filing window of April 1-7, 2010, the 15-day premium processing period began April 7. For cases filed for premium processing after the filing window, the premium processing period begins on the date that the petition is physically received at the correct USCIS Service Center.
Petitions filed by employers who are exempt from the cap or petitions filed on behalf of current H-1B workers who have been counted previously against the cap within the past six years will not count toward the congressionally mandated H-1B cap.
Resource: Weekly update of the number of H-1B petitions filed under the FY 2011 H-1B cap (Link)