Our Insights


USCIS Reaches FY 2018 H-1B Cap

Authors: Amy R. Dalal (Raleigh), Andrew G. Drozdowski (Raleigh)

Published Date: April 7, 2017

United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced today that the annual H-1B quota for both the regular 65,000 visa petition bachelor’s degree cap and the 20,000 visa petition U.S. master’s degree cap has been met for Fiscal Year (FY) 2018. The exact number of petitions received has yet to be announced but will likely be shared in the coming weeks once all of the petitions are counted. Likewise, due to the high number of petitions received, USCIS has not yet confirmed when it will complete its computerized random selection, or “lottery,” of H-1B petitions for further processing.

As a reminder, under the lottery, USCIS will first randomly select H-1B petitions for the 20,000 visas eligible under the U.S. master’s cap. All unselected master’s degree petitions will then become part of the random selection process for the 65,000 visas subject to the general quota. USCIS will return all unselected cap-subject H-1B petitions, including the filing fee checks, after the random selection process has been run. As this selection process takes time for USCIS to fully complete, unselected cases may not be returned for several months.

Please note that, as of April 3, 2017, USCIS temporarily suspended premium processing on all H-1B petitions, both cap and non-cap cases. Thus, all cases selected under the lottery will be processed under the regular processing timeline.

Ogletree Deakins will continue to monitor H-1B developments, and will update the firm’s Immigration blog on timelines and other data as they are released.

Amy R. Dalal  (Raleigh)

Amy R. Dalal
*Currently licensed in Ohio only. Amy Dalal’s practice is primarily concentrated in the areas of business visas and employment-based immigration. She assists employers in obtaining nonimmigrant and immigrant visas for their foreign national employees, including the filing of immigrant visa applications for multinational executives and managers and labor certification filings through the PERM system. Amy helps multinational corporations with the transfer of personnel from abroad into the...

Andrew G. Drozdowski  (Raleigh)

Andrew G. Drozdowski
*Currently licensed in New Jersey and New York only. Andrew Drozdowskicounsels and advises U.S. and multinational companies on a wide range ofbusiness immigration matters and compliance. He helps employers obtainimmigration benefits - work visas and green cards - for their employees.Andrew has extensive experience working withclients in the fields of information technology, business, finance, banking,insurance, law, sports, and entertainment. In addition to assistingemployers with the transfer...