On April 12, 2016, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that it had received over 236,000 H-1B petitions for this year’s filing period, which began on April 1, 2016. This record-breaking number of H-1B petitions were received in the first 7 days of April. Approximately 85,000 cap-subject H-1B petitions will be adjudicated, while approximately 151,000 petitions will be returned for not making it into the H-1B lottery.
This number includes petitions filed for the advanced degree exemption. Both the statutory 65,000 regular cap and 20,000 advanced degree cap were reached while the H-1B lottery was open. No additional H-1B cap subject cases will be accepted until April 1, 2017. USCIS will begin premium processing H-1B cap cases no later than May 16, 2016. USCIS will continue accepting and processing petitions which are otherwise exempt from the cap.