June 09, 2015

USCIS noted that it received nearly 233,000 H-1B petitions during the FY2016 filing period, which is a new record. USCIS used a computer-generated process, also known as the lottery, to randomly select the petitions needed to meet the cap of 65,000 visas for the general category and 20,000 for the U.S. master degree exemption. USCIS first randomly selects petitions for the advanced degree exemption. All unselected advanced degree petitions will becomes part of the random selection process for the 65,000 general limit. The agency will reject and return filing fees for all unselected cap-subject petitions that are not duplicate filings. Due to the high number of petitions, USCIS is not yet able to announce the date they will return unselected petitions. USCIS will start accepting next year’s H-1B quota filings in April 2016.