06 Apr 2019
USCIS has received 'sufficient number of applications' for H-1B visa
Written byAyushi Chamoli
The USCIS, US Citizenship and Immigration Services, yesterday released a notification that it has reached the authority mandated 65,000 cap of H-1B visas for the fiscal year 2020.
USCIS, under the Department of Homeland Security, is the federal agency which is given the task of approving the visa applications.
H-1B visa is the most sought-after work visa among foreign professionals, including Indians.
No definite number was given by the USCIS
The notification released on USCIS' official website said, "USCIS has received a sufficient number of petitions projected as needed to reach the congressionally-mandated 65,000 H-1B visa regular cap for fiscal year 2020."
However, the agency hasn't given a definite number.
"Petitions filed for current H-1B workers who have been counted previously against the cap are exempt from the FY 2020 H-1B cap," it added.
What is H-1B visa?
The H-1B visa is a non-immigrant visa that allows US companies to employ foreign workers in specialty occupations that require theoretical or technical expertise. The technology companies depend on it to hire tens of thousands of employees each year from countries like India and China.
New rules to increase beneficiaries under master's cap by 16%
The notification further read, "USCIS will next determine if we have received a sufficient number of petitions to meet the 20,000 H-1B visa US advanced degree exemption, known as the master's cap."
According to the new laws, applicants with a post-graduation degree from educational institutes in the US will be given preference.
'Simple, smart changes helping the H-1B visa program work better'
The Director of USCIS, L Francis Cissna, in his statement, said, "These simple and smart changes are a positive benefit for employers, the foreign workers they seek to employ, and the agency's adjudicators, helping the H-1B visa program work better."
USCIS started accepting applications for FY 2020 from April 1
Although the fiscal year 2020 will begin from October this year, USCIS had started accepting the applications for H-1B visa from April 1, 2019.
This is the first season of applications after the new laws were enforced regarding the H-1B visa.
The notification also added, "The agency will reject and return filing fees for all unselected cap-subject petitions that are not prohibited multiple filing."
USCIS received around 1.9 lakh applications in 2019
However, there has been no announcement whether there will be a lottery system like last several years.
In 2019, the USCIS received a total of 1,90,000 petitions.
In 2018 and 2017, it got 1,99,000 and 2,36,000 petitions in the first five days of opening of the applications, respectively.
In 2016 and 2015, the federal agency recorded 2,32,972 and 1,72,581 applications respectively.