H-1B regular-cap applications hit quota limits, will lottery follow? – Times of India

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H-1B regular-cap applications hit quota limits, will lottery follow? – Times of India

MUMBAI: Within five days, the

United States Citizenship and Immigration Services

(

USCIS

) has received a sufficient number of

H-1B cap-applications +

, to reach the annual regular quota of 65,000

On April 1, USCIS had opened the doors for filing of H-1B cap applications for the 2019-20 season (FY 2020), which would allow successful visa applicants to work in the US first from October 1, this year.

Annually, only 65,000 H-1B visas are allocated under the regular cap (also known as general quota) and an additional 20,000 visas under the master’s cap (for those having an advanced degree from US universities).

A release by USCIS issued late on Friday night adds that USCIS will determine if it has received a sufficient number of applications for the master’s cap.

A few more releases to the H-1B applications are expected from USCIS in the coming days, such as the total number of applications received. During the last filing season, USCIS had received 1.90 lakh applications of which 95,885 applications were eligible for Masters cap.

It is expected that USCIS will once again conduct a lottery (random computer-based selection), as has been the norm over the past several years. If it does, it will be the first time

reversal process announced on January 30 +

.

Fragomen, a global firm, specializing in immigration laws in its alert states: “If, as has been the case in recent years, both the regular and advanced degree quotas have been exceeded, USCIS will run two selection lotteries as in the past, but will change the order of the lot loties under new regulations. The agency will place all H-1B cap filings in a first lottery to select enough petitions to meet the 65,000 H-1B quota. Advanced-degree cases not selected in the first lottery will be placed in a second lottery to select qualifying petitions for the cap exemption of 20,000.

“Because of the change in the order of the lotteries, the agency may not announce that the advanced-degree cap has reached since it has run the regular cap lotter,” it adds.

USCIS has previously announced that a reversal in the lottery process will result in an estimated increase of up to 16% (or 5,340 workers) in the number of selected H-1B beneficiaries with a master’s degree or higher from a US institution of higher education.

The new lottery process is an outcome of US President Trump’s executive order – “Buy American, Hire American”.

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