Apr 12, 2019
With U.S. Master’s Cap Exceeded and Total Petitions Up, USCIS Completes H-1B Lottery
Joshua H. Rolf
Less than one week after this year’s H-1B Cap filing period ended, USCIS confirmed that on April 10, 2019 it conducted its randomized selection (i.e. “lottery”) for all H-1B Cap-Subject Petitions that arrived between April 1-5, 2019.
In making this announcement, USCIS also revealed two key bits of information regarding this year’s H-1B Cap – one expected, and one somewhat surprising. First, USCIS predictably confirmed that it received enough U.S. Master’s Cap Petitions within the filing period to meet its 20,000-visa quota. Per our prior posts on this subject, U.S. Master’s Cap Petitions will have a greater chance of being picked this year due to the Service reversing its selection order. However, USCIS also announced that this year’s cap season saw a rise in filings. In fact, and contrary to the drops we saw from 2016 through 2018, USCIS stated that it received 201,011 H-1B Cap Petitions this year. Though far fewer than the 236,000 Petitions received in 2016, this figure represents a more-than-10,000 increase from 2018’s filings, and a slight increase from 2017.
We expect to receive confirmation for those cases that were selected in this year’s drawing by mid-to-late-May, if not sooner. USCIS will also announce in the coming weeks – and no later than May 20 – that it has commenced the 15-day adjudicatory period for those cases submitted with a request for a change of status via Premium Processing. If you have any questions regarding your pending H-1B Cap Petition, please do not hesitate to contact our office.