Mar 04, 2013

FY2014 H-1B Cap Filing Season is Almost Here

If you are currently looking to hire qualified professionals who are not U.S. workers, now is the time to act. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (“USCIS”) will begin accepting cap-subject H-1B petitions for Fiscal Year 2014 on April 1, 2013. Employers who have not made appropriate arrangements for needed H-1B cap filings are urged to do so without further delay.

The number of new H-1B visas is capped at 65,000 per fiscal year. Last year, the H-1B cap was reached on June 11, 2012 and employers only had a 10-week window to file new H-1B petitions for their employees.   Due to an upturn in hiring, we anticipate that the H-1B cap will be reached earlier this year and the window to file will be even smaller. When the available H-1B numbers are used for the fiscal year, which begins October 1 and ends September 30, the cap is considered reached, and no additional cap-subject petitions can be approved until the next fiscal year.   In order to maximize the chances of obtaining one of the new available H-1B visas, employers should plan to submit their H-1B petitions as early as possible, preferably the first week in April 2013.

Employers who are not certain which of their employees may require a new H-1B visa should seek guidance from counsel to meet the approaching H-1B cap filing season. Besides new hires, likely candidates in your current workforce are recent graduates working pursuant to their Optional Practical Training (“OPT”), L-1B employees or others. 

If you have any questions about this Client Alert, please contact Laleh Sharifi at

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