April 3, 2007 – U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that as of Monday, April 2, 2007, it has already received H-1B petitions far exceeding the standard cap for Fiscal Year 2008. These H-1B petitions will be pooled in a computerized random-selection process that is required by regulation.
USCIS reportedly received a record number of H-1B filings Ã¢â‚¬â€œ 150,000 as of the afternoon of Monday, April 2, far in excess of available numbers. Therefore, a significant percentage of filed cases will not be selected in the lottery.
Because the agency received enough filings to meet the cap on the first day of the filing season, the random selection process will include cases received thru April 3, pursuant to USCIS regulations in existence since 2005. These cap-counting regulations specify that if a numerical cap is reached on the first day that cases may be filed, the random selection process includes second-day receipts as well, so that filers from regions from which overnight delivery cannot be guaranteed are not disadvantaged.
Cap-subject H-1B petitions that are not randomly selected are to be rejected and returned along with the filing fees. Cap-subject H-1B petitions that are received by USCIS after April 3, 2007 will also be rejected and returned. USCIS has indicated that, due to the large volume of filings, it will be several weeks before the cap selection process can be completed.
USCIS has not yet released information concerning the 20,000 H-1B numbers for beneficiaries holding advanced degrees from U.S. universities. The agency is expected to release information concerning the final receipt date for these petitions in the near future.