USCIS Will Accept H-1B Petitions for FY2016 Beginning April 1, 2015

The USCIS will begin accepting FY2016 petitions on April 1, 2015. The congressionally mandated cap on H-1B visas for FY 2016 is 65,000. The first 20,000 H-1B petitions filed for individuals with a U.S. master’s degree or higher are exempt from the 65,000 cap. USCIS expects to receive more petitions than the cap during the first 5 business days in April. So by April 7, 2015, the Cap is expected to close and all petitions received during the first 5 business days will be subject to a random selection lottery. H-1B petitioners may still continue to request premium processing together with their H-1B petition. However, please note that USCIS has temporarily adjusted its current premium processing practice based on historic premium processing receipt levels and the possibility that the H-1B cap will be met in the first five business days of the filing season. In order to prioritize data entry for cap subject H-1B petitions, USCIS will begin premium processing for H-1B cap-subject petitions requesting premium processing no later than May 11, 2015.

USCIS has developed detailed information, including an optional checklist, Form M-735, Optional Checklist for Form I-129 Filings, on how to completed and submit an FY 2016 H-1B Petition.


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