H1B 2013 May 22nd Cap Count Update – 6,500. High Volume, Prediction ?

In H1B Visa by KumarUpdated : 134 Comments

Typically, USCIS releases its weekly H1B cap count updates on Monday, it got delayed by a day this time….Anyways, they released the cap count updates for fiscal year 2013 earlier today . The numbers include all the H1B petitions that USCIS received until Friday, May 18th, 2012. Below is the summary of the count updates:

  • 5,300 new H1B petitions were filed under Regular quota
  • 1,200 new H1B petitions were filed under Masters degree quota

May 22nd, 2012 : H1B Visa 2013 cap count updates by USCIS

H1B Petition Filings Total CapCurrent Cap count
Regular Quota65,00042,0000
Advanced degree Quota
(Masters degree)
Remaining H1B Cap27,000

High Volume of H1B filings. Prediction Moves forward. US Economy doing OK !  

It seems like the demand for highly skilled workers is increasing every week…We are noticing a continued uptrend in the H1B filings in the past three weeks. The volume of H1B petitions filed increased continuously in the past three weeks. As we compare with last week May 14th, H1B 2013 cap count update, the regular quota cap count increased by about 1,100 from 4,200 last week to 5,300 this week…On the same lines, Master’s degree quota filings also increased slightly by 100 from 1100 last week to 1200 this week. USCIS received the highest number of petitions under regular quota for this season in this week. We are not sure if the trend would continue….Overall, the total H1B filings were up by 1,200 from 5,300 last week to 6,500 this week.

The H1B visa 2013 predictions moved a little closer as the volume of regular quota filings continue to increase every week. The regular quota prediction date has moved by about 4 days since last week and the cap could be exhausted by July 4th, 2012 . Unlike, the advanced degree quota prediction date did not change much and it can be exhausted by June 17th, 2012. We are left with 23,000 H1B visa Slots under regular quota and 4,000 H1B slots under masters degree quota for fiscal year 2013. It has been about a week since the Spring graduation, ideally, the LCAs would have been filed for these new graduates, who are seeking H1B visa this year…we can expect some spike in Master’s quota in the next couple of weeks. The prediction date could even come closer…So, if you are a student and seeking a H1B visa for FY 2013, hurry up !

As we look at US economy, nothing ground breaking this week. The unemployment rate continues to be flat…The National Association of Business Economics ( NABE) forecasts that the unemployment rate will hit 7.5% by end of 2013 and could reduce to 8% in fourth quarter of 2012…No changes in the US economy GDP forecast though…Also, good news from the Housing market is that there has been rise in sales of existing homes, it is up by 3%.  Overall, the pace of hiring seems to be sluggish, but lot better than last couple of years. In fact, the unemployment rate reduced in all the states, except two, from last year…The Startups ecosystem in the silicon valley is doing really good, most of the companies are tech startups and they need Highly skilled labor…So, I expect the H1B visa workers demand to be high…

What are your thoughts US economy and Startups ?
How about the H1B demand ?

H1B Cap Count 2013 – Regular Quota  Graph

H1B 2013 May 22nd Regular quota cap count update USCIS

Master’s Degree H1B cap count 2013 Graph

H1B 2013 Masters Quota May 22nd Cap count update USCIS

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Comments ( 134 )

  1. abc


    I had made into the H1B cap for the year 2012. I didn’t give visa interview nor had taken a date for it. But had paid fee in the bank to schedule a date for interview.

    Now I am applying for F-1 visa. There is a question in DS-160 form-
    Have you ever been refused a U.S. Visa, been refused admission to the United States, or withdrawn your application for admission at the point of entry

    What shall be my answer to this- YES or NO

  2. sayeed

    I have registered my company from NV just 1 week ago, and we are into Peoplesoft training, staffing and consulting. as there is good demand for Peoplesoft professionals, I am planning to file LSA for H1B visas

    Do you think my company is eligible for this


  3. Jayashree


    My employer filed my H1B Petition on 25th May 2012 in normal process, i have not received my receipt number till now, but people whose petition filled after me got there receipt number, do i have any issue in my petition filing?


    1. administrator

      As it has been close to 60 days since it was filed, you should ask your employer to call USCIS and follow-up.

  4. Venkatesh

    Hi Saurabh,
    1) My Petition got filed on 31-MAY-2012. When can i expect my receipt number ?
    2) Some of my friends in other companies, got their LCA filed under Multi-Slot/Multiple Locations. What is the difference between usual LCA posting and Multi-Slot LCA filing ?

    1. administrator

      1. Your employer/attorney should receive it within 60 days
      2. They can work at any of those locations w/o needing to file another LCA. However, if you want to work at any other location other than what’s mentioned in the LCA, the new LCA and H-1 amendment would be required

    2. akiles

      Hi Venkatesh,

      Mine too was filed on May 31, still not received.

      If you got any news, please email me. [email removed spam alert]


  5. Sreenivas

    Hi Saurabh,
    I am currently in US on L1, talking to a consulting firm for H1.

    There is some money associated (3.5 K), and I am told there are still chances if the petition can be applied tomorrow.

    I am trying to understand the risk associated in applying at this stage (tomorrow).I already gave my documents couple of days back.

    a) What might be the chances if the petition is filed tomorrow or on Monday.

    b) I understood from few dicussions here LCA is a prerequiste before filing petition. I never discussed with the consulting form but I guess he might have bulk LCA applied, not specific to my case.

    c) I haven’t got any offer letter so far.

    Do you see any red flags in paying money tomorrow to make it in teh last moment? I do understand it’s a risky proportion to pay money but I see the consultant firm’s profile appears good with previous visa filings.

    Looking for your advise.

    I would appreciate your quicker reply as I am going to make my decission by tomorrow morning.

    Thanks ,

    1. administrator

      1. Before the petition can be filed, LCA needs to be approved. Does the employer have it approved? If everything is ready, and the petition reaches USCIS tomorrow or Monday, then you still may have some chance.
      2. You need to check this w/ them

      As you understand, this is a financial risk and as per law the employer is supposed to pay for H-1 fees.

  6. Mayank

    Hi Saurabh,

    My H1B application is in “Initial Revive” state. I came to know about DS-160 form. What is that form and when I have to fill that? Can you please help!


    1. J


      You need to fill DS-160 once you petition gets approved. This form is for visa stamping process (Interview). No need to worry about that right now.

      Saurabh, Please correct me If m wrong.


  7. Shek

    Hi Saurabh,

    My employer filed my LCA on 5th June. After the LCA gets approved they are filing my H1B for premium processing, under the Master’s quota.

    To questions:
    1. If the Master’s quota gets exhausted by then but the general quota still exists, will my petition be automatically transferred to the general category or will it require a new LCA and a New H1B filing under the general category?

    2. Do you think I’d be able to make it to 2013 H1B Cap under Master’s quota, given that my LCA was filed only yesterday?

    Many thanks for the noble job of answering the queries of thousands.

    Kind Regards,

      1. kishan


        for the answer 1 you are telling yes for automatic transferring to the general quota or saying yes for file new LCA and new h1???

        1. administrator

          Sorry should have been more clearer. Yes for “will my petition be automatically transferred to the general category”

  8. Chaitra Shivanand

    Hi Saurabh,

    My husband has filed for H1b. He is having 50000$ package in Michelin. I also got an offer last week, but still my LCA is also not yet applied.

    1. Is it now too late to apply my LCA and then H1b filing since the quota is getting over?
    2. Can I join my husband for h4 stamping while he goes for H1b, will there be any chances of his H1 or my H4 getting rejected due to less package?
    3. If I get my H4 and fly to US and my employer from where I have an offer are ready to convert into H1, do I need to wait till next Oct to start working or I can start earlier also.

    1. administrator

      Chaitra Shivanand,
      1. You can try your luck by still proceeding w/ it
      2. His salary will not impact the outcome of your stamping
      3. If your H-1 petition is filed prior to quota reaching the max, you will be able to file COS from H-4 to H-1 anytime after H-1 is approved and not wait until next year.

  9. Vishal Mishra

    Hi All,

    I have an URGENT query. I am looking to file H1-B for my Wife who is currently on H4 Visa. The Employer is about to file LCA today (6/4/2012). Currently the H1-B count shows 55600 as per 6/1/2012.
    Do you think I still would be able to make it before the H1-B slots get over ? I also wanted to know as per the current slots available = 9400 (65000 – 55600), can all this be used for H1-B or around 6800 are left aside for Singapore / Chili residents ?

    Please respond ASAP

    Thanks in advance

    1. administrator

      If the LCA is posted now, she may not be able to make through the cap. The cap may get over by next week. Also the cap is 65000 – 6800 (FY-13 for Chile/Singapore) + unused petitions for FY-12 for Chile/Singapore (close to 6800). So the cap is still in the range of 65K.

  10. Rajini

    HI Saurabh,

    Thanks for your Support ,I have one doubt,as per current updates the reg cap count is 55 ,600.is the reg cap count is 58k or 65 k for this year.I know as per uscis its 58 k ,+6k is for singapore and chili spl quata.is there any visa left last year ,that will for this year quata.

    My LCA is under process hopefully it will get in 2 days,then my employer wil file by this week end.

    What is my chances of be in the quata?

    please let me know your thoughts on this


    1. administrator

      They remove 6800 for Chile and Singapore, but then also add unused Chile/Singapore numbers from last year. As these categories are underutilized, they end up accepting close to 65K petitions.

  11. Sashi

    Hi Saurabh,

    One small doubt ??

    My petition filed with USCIS on 25-May-12 .
    But my employed informed that they will receive the Recipt number in 30 days.

    What does this mean ?? My application is in for 2013 or still there is some changes that i m not in the game for 2013 cap ???

    Please through some lights here as well.

    1. Siri

      Even my employer filed on May 25th,2012 and now it shows it is approved..it was Premium process.
      ask your employer they will get receipt number through mail with in 2-5 business days..if USCIS recieved your package.
      it should be like EACXXXXXXXXXXXXX(receipt no) you can check online…if you recieved this then you are in CAP!!!

    2. administrator

      If your petition has already reached USCIS, then it will be considered to have made through the cap. USCIS is taking up to 60 days to issue the receipt number (which is an acknowledgment of making through the cap and can be used to track the status online).

  12. Mayank

    Hi Saurabh,
    I try to google, but still not clear when I have to go for visa stamping.
    My application was filed on 17 April, so by 16 June(2 month for processing) I would be getting decision. I’m optimistic that I’ll get approval, in that case when I have to go for visa stamping? Can you please mention any approximate date?

    Thanks in advance!

      1. Mayank

        As per USCIS, the processing time for application is 2 month! In that case I should be getting the decision(Approved OR Denied) in 2 month. Is that not correct?

        1. Dulara

          Where it has mention by USICS ?

          Premium process takes near about 10 working days. But there is no suct ETA for Regular processing.

          May i know the source of your information regarding 2 month ETA by USICS ?

          Sourabh, your Thought ?????

          1. Bhuvan

            You are right. In the USCIS site, it is mentioned as you are thinking. The truth is regular petitions are started to get decision. As per USCIS the minimum time is 2 months and the maximum time for getting decision is depends upon the case.

          2. administrator

            USCIS usually publishes the processing time for different service centers. However, those times are just indicative and not binding (unlike premium processing petitions where they adjudicate within 15 calendar days). So they may have published 2 months as the processing time, but seeing the huge lot of petitions filed in April-May, it can take longer for most of the petitions. So one should not rely on 2 months time frame.

            Just as a reference point, last fiscal year USCIS took 6 months to adjudicate the petitions filed in Oct-Nov (the last 2 months before cap was reached).

        2. hemant


          under premium case, USCIS is bound to respond within 20days of application receipt. But, under general case, it usually takes 4-6 months though it says min of 2 months. As yours was accepted on 17 april, u can expect a decision ( approved, denied , RFE ) roughly around september. And, if its approved, you can go to visa stamping any time at your comfort and you are allowed to travel only after october 1 2012. not prior to that.

          Alll the best.

    1. administrator

      A person can go for stamping at most 90 days prior to H-1 start date. Usually the H-1 start date is Oct 1, which means you can go for stamping after July 1.

  13. Asandhu


    My case is a bit complex. I will try to elaborate with as much details as I can.
    I’m currently working with Emp. A and he has filed for my H1 on 5th Apr. I have the reciept notice dated 20th Apr. The case is still pending with USCIS. In the mean time, I found another job with employer B. He also said, he would file for my visa. Emp. B filed for LCA on 24th May and got it approved today(Jun. 1). He said he would file my H1 on Jun. 5th and asked not to give notice to my current employer untill he gets a receipt from USCIS.

    Now I have 3 questions:
    1. Can employer B file for H1 while my petition is still pending with Emp A?
    2. How good are the chances for me to make it into CAP (I have a US masters degree) with Employer B filing my visa on 5th Jun?
    3. Should I ask Emp. B to file under premium processing to make my chances better?

    Thank you very much for your help in advance.

    1. administrator

      1. Yes
      2. You should be able to as there are still around 15K slots left for those who have done Masters in US
      3. Filing w/ PP doesn’t improve one’s chance of making through the cap

      1. aSANDHU

        Thank you very much Saurabh for the reply.

        I just checked the update from USCIS.

        Its 55,600 in Regular and
        18,700 in Masters cap. I would assume there are bright chances.

  14. Madhu

    Hi Saurabh,
    I applied for H1 B visa recently and the LCA has been filed for that. I was informed by my employer that stamping would be done in the month of September or October . However, there is an urgency in the project now and if possible I need to travel within one month.
    Is there any way to change the processing mode to premium?
    How much time does it take to get the Visa if it processed in premium mode?

    1. administrator

      Even if the petition gets upgraded to PP and later approved, you still cannot travel to US on H-1 until Oct 1. It can be upgraded to PP (15 calendar days processing time), but you cannot enter US on H-1 until Sep 20th (and can start working on H-1 only from Oct 1).

  15. Anil

    Hi Saurabh,

    I am on H4 visa, I am going to apply H1B, my consultancy said the fee would come to my address directly if USCIS quota ends. Is it correct?


    1. administrator

      What fees? The employer is supposed to pay for the H-1 fees. If the petition reaches USCIS after the quota has been reached, then the package is returned to the employer/attorney.

  16. L12H1

    I am currently on L1 visa. One employer is ready to file for my H1 but earliest he can do is 4th June (Monday).The employer is a big company in US. Is it possible that they may have obtained LCA before hand for the opening ? If not then I doubt I will make it to the quota this year. If they can have a LCA beforehand, and they file for H1B on Monday, is it possible for me to be part of the quota ?
    Moreover, current cap count is 48200. Does it mean, that we still have over 16k quota left or does it include the reserved 6800 Chile/Singapore count too.

    Any help/suggestion will be Golden.

    1. administrator

      If they start the LCA processing next week, then there is a 50-50 chance of making through the cap. If they already have an approved LCA, and can use it for you, then you can make through the cap.

      The cap is 65K, so 16K are left (after factoring in 6800 H1B1 for this year, and including unused ~6800 H1B1 from last year)

  17. Subba

    Hi Saurabh,

    My wife will be coming to US by June 3rd and we found one employer who can process her h1.
    Can you please clarify below things.
    1). Can they process H1(applying LCA and other process) even before my wife come to US?
    2). One employer told already they have LCA for that particular job and they are ready to process, is that correct?
    3).Do you expect if they process after June 3rd, can we made through the quota?


    1. administrator

      1. Yes
      2. LCAs are not tied to applicant but to job titles, location and salary. Beside, they can be filed in bulk. So it is possible that they already have an approved LCA, which can be used for your wife, provided it is used for same jot category, location and salary.
      3. 50-50 chance as quota is getting exhausted quickly

  18. Jimmy

    Hi Saurabh,

    My L1B got expired on June 26th, 2011 (first 3 years). My extension for L1B denied (after submitting RFE in PP) on Sep 7th, 2011. I left US on Sep 15, 2011. Here is my queries.

    1. Can I go for H1B within one year of my L1B denial?
    2. Can I go for L1 within one year of my L1B denial?
    3. If I am able to go for H1B, How long it will be valid?

    Thanks and Regards

    1. administrator

      1. Yes
      2. Yes
      3. If the time spent outside US is less than 1 year, then you will be eligible for H-1 term of 6 years minus time already spent in US on L-1. If the time spent outside US is more than a year, then you will be eligible for a new 6 year term. You fall under the latter as you left US in Sep 2011, and cannot use H-1 until Oct 2012.

      1. Jimmy

        wow..!! nice..!! Thanks for your quick response. I wonder why I didn’t approach you long back. I have wasted days searching for an answer for my queries.

        Much appreciated..!! Thanks a lot..!!


  19. Karthik

    Given the current rush for H1B petitions, what could be the expected DOL LCA approval time. My LCA was sent to DOL on 24th of May. So please let me know my chances of make it.

  20. Reddy


    Will regular cap end at 65000 or 58000 , will the excluded 6800 be added in the regular count during the update .My employer will be applying for LCA this friday .What are the chances of filing H1B . Bit worried .

    1. Siri

      can you please reply to above Q?I am also worried..bcz my petition filed on May 25th and i don’t know whether cap count is for petition filed or approved..

    2. administrator

      They have removed 6800 from FY-13 cap, and added close to 6800 from FY-12 cap (underutilized numbers from that year). So the cap is still close to 65K.

      IMO, the cap will remain open till mid-June. So you may still be able to make through the cap.

  21. L1Guy

    Hi Saurabh
    My Employer is going to apply LCA this friday. Do you think I would still make the H1B Regular H1B Cap. I know you cannot say it for sure, But do you think atleast it is hopeful ?. FYI, I am converting from L1 to H1.

    1. administrator

      At the current rate, regular cap would get over by mid-June. You may still be able to make through the cap but there is a 50-50 chance. Subsequent quota updates will provide more clarity.

  22. Raghuvir

    H1B regular cap is 48,400 as on 25th May.. My LCA was filed on 23rd May.. What are the chances of petiton getting filed before the cap closes?.. How long does it take generally to file a petition after LCA is approved ?..

    1. administrator

      If the LCA has been approved and has also been posted on internal sites or shared w/ bargaining representatives, then H-1 petition can be filed on the very next day (once the employer has all the required documents).

  23. Kai


    My LCA was filed with Department of Labor on 5/25/2012 and still awaiting Certification. The LCA was sent for Posting on 5/24/2012, does the Department of Labor need wait 10 days (posting time) to get my LCA approved?

    Also, the lawer ssays: ” they are awaiting certified LCA from Department of Labor to complete H-1B petition”, does there have enough time to fill H-1B petition before the cap reached? I just saw updated by 5/25/2012 cap amount, it is goes fast!

    Thanks a lot.

    1. administrator

      You may still be able to make through the cap. Even though you qualify for Masters degree cap, your petition can be filed against the regular quota once the Masters degree cap is reached.

          1. Kai

            Hi, Saurabh

            Thanks a lot.

            My attorney will fill my H-1B petition today throught overnight priority. Does that mean I make it into 2013 Cap (fill for master cap) as you mention the last days people are filling rushly.

          2. administrator

            USCIS hasn’t published any new numbers since Monday. Based on last update, you should be able to make through the cap if the petition reaches USCIS on June 6th.

  24. Tarun

    Hello saurabh.
    If my company in India file my L1 visa for me, how long will it be granted for? 3 years or less?

    Also how to extend L1 from within the US. Can I apply to change my L1 to H1 after working 1 year on L1? or there is some time limit to do so?

    How to change from L1 to H1?
    Please advise. Would be appreciated.
    Thank you

    1. administrator

      It is usually approved for 3 years, but USCIS can approve it for a shorter duration as well based on their review of the submitted documents. L-1 extensions can be filed by the employer in US.

      You can move to H-1 in future while being in US on L-1. The quota needs to be open at the time of H-1 filing and you need to find an employer willing to file H-1 for you. They can then file the H-1 petition along w/ COS and you can start working on H-1 from COS approval date.

      1. Tarun

        Hello Saurabh
        Thank you for clearing my doubts. I have some more questions here.
        I got your point. I can have my H1 filed for me even after 1 year of L1 provided I have an employer who is willing to file H1 for me and also H1 quota is open at that time.

        But If I couldn’t find any employer for h1 sponsorship then how to extend the L1?
        Will my employer extend L1 automatically after 3 years? If not then Can I change my employer within 3 years of L1 if other employer is ready to extend L1 or sponsor H1 for me?

        I apologize if I made it so big.
        I appreciate your advice.
        Thank you

        1. administrator

          L-1 is not transferable. So if the L-1 employer is not willing to extend the L-1, and you cannot find an employer willing to sponsor H-1, then you will have to leave US.

  25. Alex

    Very informative content, thank you Saurabh. I have a question: I am currently on H1B for a non-profit organization and I found a job at a private company. They just filed for my visa but I cannot start until October 1st if I’m correct. Since I have to relocate and I need to quit my current job, how can I get two or three weeks of grace period from the time I quit the current job to the time my visa starts with the new job?

    Thank you,

    1. administrator

      As you are already on H-1 status, you can use H-1 portability to start working on H-1 even prior to Oct 1. You can talk to your immigration lawyer about this. Also, I think it would be ok to take a break of a week to move to the new location. Again, talk to your lawyer about this.

  26. Magesh

    Thanks Saurabh for your service. Currently i have applied for L1B extn and waiting for the result for the past 4 months. My company is planning to apply H1 during next week with PP. I have few queries to be clarified.

    1) If my L1 B extn approved and my H1 stamping done,will i get the fresh H1 to stay 6 yrs or will it count from L1B start date (3 yrs in L1b had already been completed)
    2) If my L1b extn got RFE and rejected, can i start working from H1 during Oct 2012.
    3) If i get the RFE for L1 is it better to respond to it or is it gud to drop it and go back and stay in India until H1 is approved and come back to US.

    1. administrator

      1. You will be eligible for H-1 term of 6 years minus time already spent inside US on L-1
      2. Only if H-1 gets approved w/ COS by that date
      3. You can do either. You can respond to it and continue to wait in US, or decide to leave and then return after getting H-1 visa stamped. Discuss this w/ your attorney as well before making a decision

    1. administrator

      Yanglin HAN,
      Yes, applicants qualifying for Masters quota can apply in the regular quota once the former has exhausted.

  27. H1_aspirant

    What ways can you think of if I want to get on h1 visa now? Can I try for the fiscal 2013 h1 quota? I am currently on h4.
    I would appreciate your reply. Thanks in advance!

    1. administrator

      The quota is still open. So if an employer is ready to file H-1 for you, then you can make through this year’s cap.

  28. V Kumar

    Hi Saurabh,

    I am going for Buisness visa & while filling DS160 I had couple of doubts:
    1. While filling DS160 for my spouse, which category should we select:
    Business/Conference (B1)
    Tourism/Medical Treatment (B2)
    Business/Personal (B1/B2)

    2. I had previously had L1 visa and while going for second time it was stamped as “Cancelled Without Prejudice”. There is a question “Has your U.S. Visa ever been cancelled or revoked? “So should I answer “YES” to the question?


    V Kumar

    1. administrator

      V Kumar,
      1. If your wife is just accompanying you, and you are main reason for travelling to US, then it should be Business/Personal (B1/B2)
      2. The answer should be Yes

  29. Mayank

    Just wanted to know that when I will be applying for my wife’s H4 dependent visa, what all documents I would have to show? My major concern is with marriage certificate! Is marriage certificate is required for spouse? OR the marriage album is enough?

    Please provide your response.

    1. administrator

      You need to show that you guys are married. Marriage certificate is the preferred and recommended document, but in case you don’t have that you can use the following:
      – wedding card
      – wedding album
      – names mentioned in each others’ passports

  30. Suresh

    Hi saurabh,
    This is Suresh from India,I gave my old passport details to my employer now I got my
    New passport.when I go for stamping which one uscis Will consider.
    Plz let me know.
    Thanks and regards,

    1. administrator

      You should carry both passports when going for stamping. However, enter the new passport details in the DS form and submit that one for stamping. Even though the petition used the old passport, you should get it stamped in the new one.

        1. administrator

          DS-160. You can search for it online. It needs to be completed and submitted as part of stamping process.

  31. Jitu

    Hi Saurabh – My wife’s H1B petition was denied on may 18, 2012. We are still awaiting the denial notice. In the meantime, we are planning to apply for her L2 (for L1 B) shortly(within the next 2 weeks).
    Our questions are
    1. Is the H1b denial an issue so far as the L2 is concerned?
    2. Is it advisable to wait for any length of time before she goes for the L2 stamping?

    Thanks in advance.

    1. administrator

      1. Usually not, unless it was denied for reasons like fraud document submission, non-maintenance of legal status in US
      2. Not really. She can go for L-2 stamping 1-2 weeks after H-1 denial

      1. Jitu

        Thanks for the response.
        A couple of related queries –
        1. We have not received the denial notice yet. Shd we wait for the notice to come and then take the stamping appointment so that she can take it with her to the consulate?
        2. In DS-160 (for L2), there is this question –
        “Have you ever been refused a U.S. Visa, been refused admission to the United States, or withdrawn your application for admission at the port of entry?”
        What is our answer here? Our petition was denied by USCIS, so is it the same as “refused a US visa”. So shd our answer be Yes or No to the question mentioned above.

        1. administrator

          I am assuming your wife is outside of US at the moment, and H-1 was applied from outside US.
          1. In most of the cases, the denial is related to employer, qualifications to offered position and the position itself. So making that assumption (that denial is not related to her directly), she can go for L-2 visa stamping.
          2. The answer should be No. Only when 221g is issued during visa stamping, should the answer to this question be Yes.

  32. Samuel


    I would like to ask about your predictions for the H1B cap exhaustion date. From your trend graph, I see how you predict that the cap will be exhausted by early-July.

    The regular cap is already at 42,000 as of 18 May, compared to about 13,000 in May 2011 (for 2012 H1B cap) and 20,000 for May 2010 (for 2011 H1B cap). My immigration lawyer previously suggested filing the application in November/December to allow us to move shortly before summer 2013 (based on the previous years experience of cap filling around these times) but this looks rather infeasible now based on the figures.

    Any comment?

    1. administrator

      The quota may get over by early July or late June. So your employer should start the filing process ASAP if they want to make through this year’s cap.

  33. V Kumar

    Hi Saurabh/Kumar,

    Regarding the H1-B Cap, USCIS website sates that:
    “H-1B workers who are petitioned for or employed at an institution of higher education or its affiliated or related nonprofit entities or a nonprofit research organization, or a government research organization are not subject to the numerical cap.”

    1. How do we verify if the particular organization has H1-B cap exempt?
    2. If someone is petitioned thru any such organization, can he change the employer who is a for-profit organization?


    V Kumar

    1. administrator

      V Kumar,
      1. If the company is outside of the mentioned industry then it definitely doesn’t come under this category. I don’t know if there is a way to find out if the company (which is within the mentioned industries) qualifies or not.
      2. Yes, they can later move to a for-profit company. They will have to go through quota at that point of time.

  34. kyathi


    I will be applying H-1B next week i.e. on tuesday and my company is ready with LCA. So how long will it take for me to get receipt .
    What if USCIS receives my documents , and next day or so quota is over and I have not received the receipt. Will I be include in this 2013 H-1B quota. Please let me know.

    1. administrator

      Once the petition is filed w/ USCIS, your employer/attorney should receive the petition within 30 days (it is delayed these days, and so can take up to 60 days).

      You will still be counted in the quota as long as your documents reached USCIS prior to the day quota was reached.

  35. aspire_h1b


    I am going to “START” the process for filing H1b tomorrow
    By looking at the cap count available, should I wait and apply for next year?
    please advice, thanks in advance

    1. administrator

      There is a 50-50 chance as your employer will have to get LCA certified and post it on job location which can take 2-3 weeks. Only after that petition can be filed.

  36. Swathi

    Hi Saurabh,

    My employer filed my h1b in end of April under “Premium process” and I got RFE in May 2nd week. Usually, how long do they give time to reply RFE under premium process. Once we get RFE, do they consider my application as “regular process” or do thay have any time constraint/limit to finalise the process.

    Reply would be appreciated.


    1. administrator

      Usually 60 days are given to respond to the RFE. Once your employer submits the RFE response, USCIS will adjudicate it w/ premium processing (it is not treated as regular but premium) and will be adjudicated in another 15 calendar days.

  37. GMP

    Thanks Saurabh.

    If my employer file my H1 and forgot/fail to provide client letter..

    will RFE come or application will denied?….if RFE comes in how many days employer has to provide?
    In advance thanks.

    1. administrator

      Usually they issue RFE when a document is missing and they need it for processing. They usually give 60 days to respond to the RFE.

      1. GMP

        Thanks a lot…

        My wife’s company is asking her to go to india for 1 month ….

        1)i’m on L-2 is it fine if she go for one month i can stay here as my I-94 is valid till sept 1st week.

        2)can my employer file regular new H1 without client letter. bcos they have to place me in to project then in a week.atlst my case will reach to USCIS. otherwise quota will be finished. rest all documents I have with me.

        3) once i got placed they can provide client letter to USCIS.(Through RFE) and then my employer can convert it to premium

        is it valid case.is there any problem in this.

        Please reply me.

        Thanks a lot a ton.

        1. administrator

          1. If she is going to India for just 1 month, and planning to return on L-1 visa after that, then you can continue to remain on L-2 here in US
          2. Yes, they can file it w/o client letter. If RFE is issued, your employer will then have to provide those details.
          3. Yes, they can upgrade to PP when responding to the RFE

  38. SM

    Hi Saurabh,
    My company has filed for my H1B (fresh) with USCIS on 13th April. But we have still not received the receipt/ file no. Is this normal? How many days does it take?

    1. Venkat

      Please read the below Article published today


  39. tintin77

    Hi Saurabh,

    I have got an interview call from one of the big companies on June 1st week. Can you please let me know any tips on how I can suggest that they have to move faster because the h1b quota is getting over very fast. I know this is kinda obvious question but sometimes you word things nicely.
    Do you think I can make it, if they make a decision by June 1st week. Please let know.


    1. administrator

      I thought you already had an approved H-1 petition which was sent back to USCIS for reconsideration. In that case, you qualify for cap-exempt petition (if you have copy of previously approved 797).

      In case you never had approved H-1 in the past, then you will have to emphasize the urgency to them. I would suggest not bringing up the visa thing from your side and first impress them w/ your skills and expertise. Finally when they talk about visa sponsorship, you can say that you would need visa sponsorship, and then emphasize that things need to proceed quickly. You can point the latest quota count. Most companies will then put you in touch w/ their attorney to figure out next steps, and you can then tell your entire history to them.

      Hope that helps! Good luck!

      1. tintin77

        Hi Saurabh,

        I think you are mistaking me for someone else. I actually had a H1b back in 2003. One person who interviewed me from a company said they checked with their attorney and said they think I am not qualified for cap-exempt, but I doubt how serious they were about it.

        Anyways, thanks for the tips. I think I should talk about visa sponsorship after the interviews about skills and expertise.

        Thanks for all your help.

  40. suresh

    Hi every one.

    Please advise my situation . Hi Saurabh please advise me with your expertise

    I submitted my Cap subject application on 5/21 which did not have my license( I will meet the requirements for license and also will get the license on 5/30) so i am 100% certain that i would get a RFE and the problem is they might deny my application saying that i did not meet the requirements for my license on the day oof submission which is 5/21. So i am submitting one more application on 5/30 if the cap numbers are avilable and this one going to be the complete application( duplicate of my first application with license) and it is premium processing not the regular like my first one. I am also going to mention inn my second application that i submitted the first application because i did not have license and i will apologize and will withdraw the first application if i am able to apply second application.

    1) By doing this can USCIS deny my both applications saying multiple applications?
    2)If i do not submit a second application will they process my visa with my answer to RFE with out saying that i did not meet the requirements for license on the day of submission?

    Please advise me ASAP.
    Thank you very much in advance.

    1. administrator

      1. They might consider it as duplicate. It will really come down to whether they withdraw/ignore the previous one and look only at the new peititon
      2. They may or may not

      You should check w/ your attorney on these questions.

  41. H1B2013_aspirant

    Hi Saurabh,

    I am on L1-B visa that expires on 19th July 2012 (I-94 as well). There were talks between me and my company’s visa processing department regarding possible L1-B extension, but it has been communicated that after analyzing the risk of L1-B extension for rejection, they are going to file H1-B in 2-3 days on regular processing. In this case, are there chances that can still get into the 2013 H1-B quota.


    1. administrator

      They will have to do LCA formalities which can take 2-3 weeks. Only after that, H-1 application can be filed. Looking at current visa filing rate, quota may survive till June end.

      1. tintin77

        Hi Saurabh,

        quick question, does LCA take 2-3 weeks even for bigger companies. I heard that companies apply and keep LCA’s available before hand, it that possible, please let know.


        1. administrator

          LCA certification takes around 10 days, and it needs to be posted on job location sites for another 10 days. That’s why it said LCA formalities take 2-3 weeks. This is usually same for all companies. However, some companies file LCA for bulk petitions (one can specify number of employees covered under the LCA). That helps in cutting down the time, but this is possible only when the location, job title, and minimum salary of the offered position is same as the bulk approved LCA.

          1. tintin77

            Hi Saurabh,

            Thanks for your explanation. I have one more question. Is LCA dependent on employee or the position. Like for example, can a company apply for an LCA beforehand and then interview some people who might fit that, or the LCA needs the employee’s particular details like experience, degree certificates etc.
            I think I got the point about the bulk LCA, but what about an individual position. Finally, what do big companies do, I guess they must be following the H1B quota status and must have been taking some steps.

            Thanks for all your help again.

          2. administrator

            LCA doesn’t contain employee’s information. So yes, an employer can file a LCA and then use it when they find employees. LCA needs job title, location and salary, and so the employee it is used for should be within those criteria.

            I don’t know what they do, but they could either have approved bulk LCAs, or rely on the quota dates.

  42. V Kumar

    Hi Kumar/Saurabh,

    I have this question on B1 visa, as I was not sure on which post I should have asked, I am just posting it here.

    I will be entering US on B1 next week and as usual my I94 would be stamped for 6 months. My questions are:
    1. Can I change my employer while being in US?, If yes how soon?
    2. Can an employer apply green card for me? If yes, and also if things go well can my stay be extended? If No, lets forget.

    Would really appreciate a response.

    V Kumar

    1. administrator

      V Kumar,
      1. Yes, you can change employer. The employer will have to file H-1 visa for you. It is recommended to file H-1 w/ COS after staying in US for at least 30-60 days.
      2. Yes, an employer can file GC for you. You cannot get B-1 extensions based on your GC filing. You will have to move to another visa like H-1 in order to continue to stay and work in US

  43. Srikanth

    Currently I am located in UK. I have H1B petition approved through a consultancy in USA. My employer is asking me to attend the Visa interview in UK or Ireland.
    Could you please advise me or share any experience of people who attended US Visa interview in UK. My UK Visa will expire by Aug’12. I will need to attend the visa interview sometime in Aug 1st week. It would be grateful if someone experience who attended interview in UK.
    Thank you, Srikanth

  44. Tarun

    Hello Kumar/Saurabh,
    I would like to know that If I apply for H1B after completing my Master’s in India, What category would it fall under? Regular Quota or Advanced degree Quota (Masters degree) ?

    Also under what category does Remaining H1B Cap (27,000) fall?

    I know that foreign nationals who have Master’s degrees from US universities are not subjected to the Regular (65,000) Quota.
    I guess my petition would fall under the Regular Quota, I would like to have your advice on this though.
    Best Regards,

    1. administrator

      It will be regular quota. Only Master degree done from an accredited US school is considered for Advanced Degree quota.

      The remaining numbers are made up of 4k from advanced degree, and 23K from regular.

  45. Brejesh Bisht

    OMG.. My LCA is still under posting, has been posted for 8 days now and cap count is getting closer.
    My all other documents are ready except LCA. 🙁

    Any idea please after 10th day of LCA, how much time it would take to get filled, I mean to get into the this year quota?


    1. SDoshi

      It generally takes around 3-4 days after LCA approval.
      It should not be an issue… The quota will be there till July First week.
      Dont worry.

      1. Alex

        Hey SDoshi,

        Do you have to wait for the LCA to be approved before posting it publicly for 10 days? My company received the filing receipt of the LCA on May 25th but it hasn’t been approved yet…….I am starting to get worried after seeing the last quota update……

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