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H-1B Cap Selection Is Complete. Now What?

by | May 3, 2019 | H-1B/H-4, Immigration, Immigration News, Nonimmigrant Petitions

USCIS announced that the cap of 85,000 new H-1B visas for FY2020 was met. They received a total of 201,011 H-1B cap petitions.

There was an 11% increase from FY2019 in H-1B advanced degree (master’s and above) petitions selected in the FY2020 lottery; about 63% of those selected were advanced degree petitions.

Unfortunately, as it has been for the last two years, being selected is just the first challenge. With the Request for Evidence (RFE) rate for last year at 60%, this is the next hurdle to overcome towards approval.

If you submitted a petition, you may wonder, “What happens now? When will I know if mine is selected?” USCIS typically takes several weeks to months to notify which cases are selected in the lottery.

Learn more about what you can expect.

Here is an overview of the process USCIS goes through and where we are currently:

  1. Process and issue receipt notices for cases selected in the lottery. This typically takes a few months, with the first notifications going out mid-April and then ending around May/June. We have begun to receive H-1B lottery receipts and have notified those clients.
  2. Process and adjudicate the cases selected in the lottery. Adjudications begin after receipts are issued and typically continue through September or October. For last year’s lottery, most cases were adjudicated by October, but some were not. In fact, we just recently received the approval of our last pending H-1B cap case from FY2019 a few days ago.    
  3. Issue a Request for Evidence (RFE). The receipt of an RFE has been a significant and arbitrary burden over the last two years. Every applicant should be prepared to potentially receive one. We are working hard and strategically with our clients on RFE responses.
  4. Return cases that were not selected in the lottery. Cap cases that were not selected begin to be returned in July and typically continue through August.




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