Federal Agencies, Agency Memos & Announcements

H-1B Cap Count History

4/13/16 AILA Doc. No. 15120404. Business Immigration, H-1B & H-1B1 Specialty Occupation
AILA resource page with USCIS H-1B cap count history.


USCIS Reaches FY2017 H-1B Cap
April 7, 2016
USCIS has reached the congressionally mandated H-1B cap for FY2017. USCIS will use a computer-generated process, also known as the lottery, to randomly select the petitions needed to meet the general category and advanced degree caps. USCIS has not announced when the lottery will take place.

USCIS Completes the H-1B Cap Lottery for FY2017
April 13, 2016
USCIS used a computer-generated random selection process, or lottery, on April 9, 2016, to select enough petitions to meet the FY2017 H-1B cap. USCIS received over 236,000 H-1B petitions during the filing period and will begin premium processing no later than May 16, 2016.


USCIS Alert: FY2016 H-1B Cap Has Been Reached
April 7, 2015
USCIS alert that it has reached the H-1B cap for FY2016. Before running the lottery, USCIS will complete initial intake for all filings received during the filing period. Due to the high number of petitions, USCIS is not yet able to announce when it will conduct the random selection process.

USCIS Completes H-1B Cap Lottery for FY2016
April 13, 2016
USCIS notice that on April 13, 2015, it used a computer-generated random selection process, or lottery, to select petitions to meet the FY2016 cap. USCIS will begin premium processing for H-1B cap cases no later than May 11, 2015. USCIS received nearly 233,000 H-1B petitions during the filing period.


USCIS Received Sufficient FY2015 H-1B Petitions to Trigger Random Lottery
April 7, 2014
USCIS announcement that it has received a sufficient number of H-1B petitions to reach the statutory cap for FY2015 for both the general category and the advanced degree exemption category and will close the filing period after 4/7/14. A random lottery will occur at a later date. AILA Doc. No. 14040740

USCIS Received Around 172,500 H-1B Petitions and Completed Random Selection Process
USCIS press release stating that they received approximately 172,500 H-1B petitions during the FY2015 filing period and completed the computer-generated random selection process on 4/10/14 to meet the 65,000 general-category cap and the 20,000 cap under the advanced degree exemption. AILA Doc. No. 14040740


USCIS Update on Reaching FY2014 H-1B Cap
April 5, 2013
USCIS press release stating that they received 124,000 H-1B petitions during FY2014 filing period & used a computer-generated random selection lottery process on April 7, 2013 to meet caps of 65,000 for general category & 20,000 under advanced degree exemption limit. AILA Doc. No. 13040848


FY2013 H-1B Cap Count
June 11, 2012
USCIS announced that it received enough H-1B petitions to reach the 65,000 statutory cap for FY2013 as of June 11, 2012. AILA Doc. No. 12040939.


FY2012 H-1B Cap Count
November 23, 2011
USCIS announcement that as of 11/23/11, it has received a sufficient number of H-1B cap-subject petitions. November 22, 2011, was the final receipt date for new H-1B specialty occupation petitions requesting an employment start date of FY2012. AILA Doc. No. 11040864.


FY2011 H-1B Cap Count
January 26, 2011
USCIS updated its count of FY2011 cap-subject H-1B petitions and advanced degree cap-exempt petitions receipted. As of 1/26/11, the FY2011 cap-subject H-1B petition cap has been reached. USCIS has receipted more than 20,000 H-1B petitions for aliens with advanced degrees. AILA Doc. No. 10042368.


USCIS Announces FY 2010 H1B Cap Reached
December 21, 2009
USCIS announces FY 2010 cap-subject H-1B petition cap reached as of 12/21/2009. AILA Doc. No. 09042065.


USCIS Announces FY2009 H-1B Caps Reached
April 8, 2008
USCIS Update April 8, 2008, reports on FY2009 H-1B cap filings. AILA Doc. No. 08040830.


USCIS Announces H-1B Cap Reached
April 3, 2007
The USCIS has announced that the H-1B cap for Fiscal Year 2008 was reached on the first day that filing was permitted, April 2, 2007. The announcement contains further information on the random selection lottery, on the U.S-earned Master's degree exemption from the cap, and on processing of petitions. AILA Doc No. 07040368.


H-1B Cap Reached for Fiscal 2007
June 1, 2006
USCIS announces that the H-1B cap was reached as of petitions submitted by May 26, 2006. Petitions received after that date will be returned. Petitions received on that date will be subject to a random selection process. AILA Doc. No. 06060171.


USCIS Announces that H-1B Cap for Fiscal 2006 Is Reached
August 12, 2005
Notice from USCIS announces that sufficient H-1Bs have been received to reach the fiscal 2006 H-1B cap, and that filings are cut off for any petitions received after August 10, 2005. Exemptions and set-asides are discussed. AILA Doc. No. 05081260.

USCIS Reaches H-1B Exemption Cap For Fiscal Year 2006
January 18, 2006
USCIS announced today that it has received enough H-1B petitions that qualify for the exemption from the H-1B numerical limitations for foreign workers with a U.S.-earned master's or higher. The "final receipt date" for these 20,000 cap-exempt H-1B petitions is January 17, 2006. AILA Doc No. 06011899


USCIS Reaches H-1B Cap for Fiscal 2005
October 1, 2004
USCIS announced, at approximately 8:00 pm on October 1, 2004, the first day of fiscal year 2005, that it has enough H-1Bs in the pipeline to meet the FY2005 cap. All cap-subject cases received after the end of the business day October 1 will be returned. AILA Doc. No. 04100210.


USCIS Reaches H-1B Cap
February 17, 2004
USCIS announces on 2/17/04 that enough cap-subject H-1B cases are in the pipeline to reach the fiscal 2004 cap. Cap-subject cases filed after today will be returned. AILA Doc. No. 04021711.

Clarification: Fiscal 2004 and Fiscal 2005 H-1B Numbers
Clarification explains that the figure of 56,100 is for H-1Bs adjudicated so far in fiscal year 2004, which ends 9/30/04, and that the figure of 40,000 is for H-1Bs filed for fiscal year 2005, which starts on 10/1/04. AILA Doc. No. 04082364.


USCIS Reports on Total H-1B Usage for FY2003
FY2003 H-1B cap was not reached
A USCIS Fact Sheet reports on total H-1B usage for FY2003, including the number of petitions filed, as well as the number of petitions approved for both continuing and initial employment. AILA Doc. No. 03102340


BCIS Reports on FY2002 H-1B Usage
FY2002 H-1B cap was not reached
The BCIS reports that the INS received a total of 215,190 H-1B petitions in FY2002. Of the 197,537 petitions the agency ultimately approved, 103,584 were for initial employment, including 79,100 that were subject to the annual cap and 18,600 that were not. AILA Doc. No. 03040841

Includes Chart of H-1B Approvals: FY1992-FY2005

CRS Issues Report on H-1B Visa History and Trends
Congressional Research Service report on H-1B legislative history and current trends. AILA Doc. No. 06033028