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H-1B Fiscal Year (FY) 2015 Cap Season

 The H-1B Program.
 

U.S. businesses use the H-1B visa program to employ foreign workers in specialty occupations that require theoretical or practical application of a body of highly specialized knowledge, including, but not limited to: scientists, engineers, or computer programmers. For more information about the H-1B program, visit our H-1B Specialty Occupations Web page.

How USCIS Determines If an H-1B Petition Is Subject to the FY 2015 Cap

We use the information provided in Part C of the H-1B Data Collection and Filing Fee Exemption Supplement (pages 17-19 of Form I-129 with a revision date of November 23, 2010, or later). This information helps us determine whether a petition is subject to the regular cap of 65,000 H-1B visas. An advanced degree exemption is provided for the first 20,000 petitions filed for a beneficiary who has obtained a U.S. master’s degree or higher. Once that limit is reached, any petitions filed for beneficiaries with a U.S. master’s degree or higher will count against the regular cap, unless exempt for other reasons.

FY 2015 H-1B Cap Count
 

Cap Type  
 
Cap AmountCap Eligible PetitionsDate of Last Count
  H-1B Regular Cap 65,000          
H-1B Master’s Exemption

 20,000
 

           


Cap Eligible Petitions

This is the number of petitions that USCIS has accepted for this particular type of cap. It includes cases that have been approved or are still pending. It does not include petitions that have been denied.

Cap Amounts

The current annual cap on the H-1B category is 65,000. Not all H-1B nonimmigrant visas are subject to this annual cap. Please note that up to 6,800 visas are set aside from the 65,000 each fiscal year for the H-1B1 program under the terms of the legislation implementing the U.S. Chile and U.S. Singapore free trade agreements. Unused visas in this group become available for H-1B use for the next fiscal year.

The Consolidated Natural Resources Act of 2008 (CNRA), Public Law 110-229, includes a provision exempting H-1B workers performing labor or services in the CNMI and Guam from the H-1B numerical limitation. H-1B workers in Guam and the CNMI are exempt from the statutory numerical limitation for H-1B classification provided that the petition is filed before  December 31, 2014. Employers cannot file an extension request for an employee more than six months in advance of the intended employment start date.  As a reminder, USCIS will reject extensions filed more than six months in advance.

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