H1B Visa Cap 2018:

Things You Must Know


Yet another H1B Cap filing season came to an end!

The H1B Visa Cap 2018 filing season came to a quick end following USCIS announcement that it had received a sufficient number of petitions to meet the H1B annual Cap within the first week of filing that started on April 1, 2017.

This left both the H1B employers and H1B candidates wondering what their next steps should be.

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H1B Visa Cap 2018 – What Really Happened?

Let us take a look at some of the notable highlights of the H1B Visa Cap 2018 filing season, and the best way forward for employers and H1B workers whose H1B 2018 petitions were not selected in the H1B lottery 2018

1. H1B Cap 2018 Filing Period: How Long Was It?

USCIS began accepting H1B petitions subject to the FY 2018 H1B Cap on April 3, 2017 (April 1 was a Saturday).

The filing period lasted only for the first 5 business days starting April 3, 2017 as required by law. On April 7, 2017, USCIS announced that it had received a sufficient number of H1B petitions to reach the H1B 2018 Cap. It also announced that it had reached the limit of 20,000 H1B petitions filed under the advanced degree exemption.

USCIS must accept H1B Cap subject petitions received during the first 5 business days starting April 1st.

Compare Your H-1B Lottery Results With Peers, And Improve Your Approvals

Let’s look at one of the representative companies VisaPro Attorneys have helped during FY 2016 H-1B lottery.

By examining the FY H-1B lottery results from various companies, you can improve your FY 2019 H-1B lottery selection and approvals.

H-1B Cap Filing Scenario

In this scenario, there were numerous factors that are generally recognized to be unfavorable for H-1B approvals:

a.The petitioner is in the business of IT consulting.

b.The petitioner is a small business with less than 10 employees.

c.All the beneficiaries were from outside U.S. – no Master’s Quota.

d.All the beneficiaries were located in India.

e.All the beneficiaries were going to different clients across the country.

f.All the beneficiaries were going to work only at client locations.

H-1B Cap Filing Outcome

In this scenario, there were numerous factors that are generally recognized to be unfavorable for H-1B approvals:

a.Number of H-1B petitions filed: 17.

b.Number of H-1B petitions selected in the lottery: 10.

c.Number of H-1B petitions that received RFE: 0.

d.Number of H-1B petitions approved: 10.

If you wish to integrate our success strategies into your FY 2019 H1B Cap filings, schedule a Free FY 2019 H1B Filing Plan Consultation today!

2. H1B Visa 2018 Petitions: How Many Were Filed?

USCIS received 199,000 H1B petitions subject to the FY 2018 H1B Cap, during the first 5 days of the filing period that began April 3. This figure of 199,000 included petitions filed for the 20,000 advanced degree (U.S. master’s degree or higher) exemption.

For the fifth consecutive year the H1B Cap was reached during the first 5 business day of April.

3. H1B Visa Lottery 2018: When Was It Conducted?

USCIS completed a computer-generated random selection process, or the H1B lottery, on April 11th to meet the regular cap and the master’s cap.

USCIS conducted the selection process for the advanced degree exemption first. All advanced degree petitions that were not selected became part of the random selection process for the 65,000 regular cap limit.

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4. H1B Petitions Not Selected: When Are You Informed?

Cap-subject petitions not selected in the H1B lottery FY 2018 were rejected and returned with USCIS filing fees.

While employers started receiving receipt notices for H1B petitions selected in the lottery in the last week of April 2017, most employers did not receive rejected petitions until mid June.

Employers are prohibited from filing multiple H1B Cap petitions for the same employee. USCIS will deny or revoke multiple petitions filed by a single employer for the same H1B worker and will not refund the filing fees submitted with such petitions.


Employers and H1B candidates unsuccessful in the H1B visa FY 2018 lottery will not have a chance to file new H1B until April 2018, and have to look for alternative U.S. work visa options.

VisaPro specializes in developing customized strategies after the H1B Visa Cap 2018 reached. We have successfully handled H1B alternatives for a variety of clients ranging from startup companies to multinationals.

Contact VisaPro Law Firm today for a FREE H1B Alternatives Consultation. We’ll talk through your priorities and recommend strategies based on our attorneys’ near 100% success rate.

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