Are you ready for the 2018 H Quota?

Practice Areas

By: Melissa Chan

For fiscal year beginning on October 1, Congress has established mandated annual limitations of 65,000 on the number of new H-1B visas, plus 20,000 H-1B exemptions for individuals with U.S. Masters or higher degrees per fiscal year.

Although filings begin on Sunday, April 1, 2018, employment cannot begin earlier than October 1, 2018.  If there are any delays at the U.S. Consulates with visa stamping, then you would need to add a few more months.  As a result, even though the filings begin on April 1, 2018, you may not be able to onboard your H-1B employees until late 2018 or early 2019.

It is anticipated FY 2019 cap will be just as demanding, meaning the quota will be exhausted the 1st week of April.

Now is the time to start planning for the FY 2018 H-1B cap filings for petitions to be received by USCIS on Monday, April 2, 2018, the 1st business day USCIS will accept H-1B subject to cap filings for its FY 2019.

Here is a summary of past years H1B Visa Quotas with April 1 start filing date and the dates they were Exhausted:

  1.  FY 2017 H1B Visa Cap/Quota:
  • Regular H-1B Visa cap of *58,200 reached on April 7, 2016.
  • US Master Degree H-1B Visa Cap of 20,000 reached on April 7, 2016.
  1. FY 2016 H1B Visa Cap/Quota:
  • Regular H-1B Visa cap of *58,200 reached on April 7, 2015.
  • US Master Degree H-1B Visa Cap of 20,000 reached on April 7, 2015.
  1. FY 2015 H1B Visa Cap/Quota:
  • Regular H-1B Visa cap of *58,200 reached on April 7, 2014.
  • US Master Degree H-1B Visa Cap of 20,000 reached on April 7, 2014.

*Under the US-Chile and US-Singapore Free Trade Agreements, 6,800 of 65,000 available visas are annually set aside for the Chile/Singapore H-1B1 programs (1,400 for Chile and 5,400 for Singapore). Therefore, only 58,200 H visas are set aside for foreign nationals in the remaining countries.

Cap Exempt H Filings:

 The following are cap exempt H-1B filings, where USCIS will continue to accept and process H-1B petitions under the following scenarios:

  • Extend H-1B status: Extend the amount of time a current H-1B worker may remain in the United States;
  • Change of Employer: Allow current H-1B workers to change employers; and
  • Concurrent H-1B employments: Allow current H-1B workers to work concurrently in a second H-1B position.
Scroll to Top

Request a Consultation

Please use the form below to request a consultation.

By submitting this contact form, you are opting in to receive email communications from Chugh, LLP. Submitting this form does not create an attorney-client relationship. Do not submit confidential information through this form.

Sign Up to Our Newsletter

Get the latest news and updates about Chugh LLP