As expected, the US Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) announced yesterday that it has received enough H-1B petitions, which are issued to temporary workers, to meet the cap for fiscal year 2009. The cap was reached just one week after the application period opened. The 20,000 H-1B cap for holders of advanced degrees has also been reached.
Before running the random selection process, USCIS will complete initial data entry for all filings received during the filing period ending on April 7, 2008. Due to the high number of petitions, USCIS is not yet able to announce the precise day on which it will conduct the random selection process. USCIS will reject, and return filing fees for all cap-subject petitions not randomly selected, unless found to be a duplicate. USCIS will handle duplicate filings in accordance with the interim final rule published on March 24, 2008 in the Federal Register.
The agency will conduct the selection process for “advanced degree” exemption petitions first. All “advanced degree” petitions not selected will be part of the random selection process for the 65,000 limit.