H-1B FY2012 Filing Begins in 3 Weeks

The H-1B is a non-immigrant status that enables U.S. employers to temporarily employ foreign workers in a specialty occupation. H-1B petitions can be filed six months in advance of the requested start date.

Therefore, petitions seeking an October 1, 2011 start date can be filed no sooner than April 1, 2011. This is when the majority of H-1B cap subject petitions are filed. (Please note that petitions that are cap exempt may be filed at any time during the year.)

The visas are capped at 65,000 for regular petitions and 20,000 for masters’ degree petitions.  Normally, there are more petitions than the available visa numbers, and if a petition is filed after the visa quota is filled, it will be rejected.  This means the petitioner will have to wait until the next fiscal year.  Each year is unpredictable and employers and candidates must prepare for the worst case scenario. We encourage those who are considering H-1B to begin the preparation as soon as possible.

Siyuan Chang