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H1B Visa 2019 – Lottery Predictions ? Fee, Quota, News & FAQs

We will look at the some of the common FAQs that are tied to H1B work visa for fiscal year 2019.  This article will be updated with latest info as we get more info.

  • H1B 2019 Season Start Date ?
  • H1B Visa 2019 Quota ?
  • Will there be lottery for H1B 2019 ?
  • H1B 2019 Lottery date ?
  • How to find H1B 2019 Sponsors ?
  • H1B visa 2019 fees ?
  • H1B 2019 Latest News

Update  : H1B 2019, 2020 Seasons are over, H1B 2021 Season is the upcoming season. Read all details at H1B Visa 2021 – Start Date, Fee, Lottery, Registration – FAQs 

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What is the H1B Visa 2019 season start date ?
Update : USCIS will start accepting H1B Petitions starting from April 2nd, 2018 as per their official update on their website. In general, USCIS starts accepting applications for the next fiscal year exactly 6 months before the start of the next fiscal year. USCIS fiscal year for 2019 starts from 1st October 2018, which means they should accept applications for FY 2019 from April 1st, 2018. As April 1st is a Sunday, USCIS should accept applications for H1B 2019 season from April 2nd, 2019.

What is H1B visa 2019 Quota for Regular and Masters filings ?
As of the date of writing of article, the H1B quota is as below. This is also called the H1B Visa Cap. You can read more at What is H1B Cap ? Regular vs Masters quota ?

  • H1B Regular Quota : 65,000 visas
  • H1B Master’s Quota : 20,000 visas. ( only US Masters eligible)

Also, of the overall 85,000 visa cap, every year 6,800 visas are set aside for the citizens of Singapore and Chile as part of the Free Trade Agreement with them. There were few bills part of Comprehensive Immigration Reform that are not active in Senate that were proposed from Obama administration days to change the cap count to 110,000 and Masters to 25,000, including potential to make H1B cap extend up to 180,000. But nothing has moved and all are dormant. Nothing new has been proposed by the new Trump Administration regarding changing cap count. To get a glimpse of historical cap count changes, you may check H1B visa cap count history from 1990 to 2017

Will there be Lottery for H1B 2019 season ? Lottery Predictions ? Filing Numbers ?
Update : USCIS had lottery for FY 2019 quota and received 190,098 petitions.
Looking at the historical trend of H1B filings, cap reach dates, it is quite possible that we would have lottery for FY 2019 quota.  We have written a detail article looking at historical data, Trump administration new policies like ‘Buy American, Hire American’, students on OPT, H4 EAD removal rule, etc. factors. To know the prediction numbers and details, read the article:  H1B Visa 2019 Lottery Predictions – Analysis, Graphs .

When is H1B Visa 2019 Lottery Date ? 
Update : USCIS Conducted Lottery for FY 2019 on April 11, 2018.
There are two things, one is when the H1B petitions are accepted for the lottery and second is when the actual lottery is done. H1B visa petitions for next fiscal year would be accepted by USCIS from April 2nd, 2018 for 5 working days until April 6th, 2018 to be part of the lottery. Now, the actual lottery date depends on various factors depending the volume of petitions and USCIS load. It can be anywhere in second week of April. For FY 2018, the actual H1B Lottery was done on April 11th, 2017 . We can expect anywhere around the same date like April 11th or April 13th.

How to find H1B visa 2019 Sponsors ? 
It can be very hard to find a good employer and convince them to sponsor H1B to work in US with major unknown like H1B Visa lottery. Anyways, you would be in one of the three scenarios, if you are seeking a H1B Sponsor. 

  • F1 Student in US : You can find an internship or co-op at an employer who can sponsor H1B visa and ask them to sponsor your H1B. You can continue to work on OPT once you graduate as well. You find the list of H1B Sponsoring companies using the tool
  • International Professionals  : If you are outside of US, it can be tricky with all the latest rules by Trump administration. Your best bet is to find an multi-national company ( MNC) and work through them to sponsor H1B visa. You may have hurdles inside the company with all the internal process, many waiting, etc. But, it is up to you to negotiate and ask them to take a chance. Many try the IT body shop route, where they ask them to file H1B. Rules have changed in the last few years and it is very risky move and can jeopardize your US hopes. Read comments on this H1B Companies Reviews article  to get an idea and  beware of such consulting companies to avoid fraud.
  • Important Note : We, as RedBu2US, DO NOT Provide any H1B sponsorship or guide anyone using professional services or fee. If anyone approaches you by saying our name, it is pure FRAUD…beware !

If you are looking for more details, check out Guide on How to Find H1B Visa Sponsors 2019

What is H1B 2019 Filing Fee ? 
H1B visa petition filing involves USCIS fee towards certain things and attorney fees, which varies by company size, and attorney involved for the case.  As of FY 2018 season, it can range anywhere from $1,600 USD to $7,400 USD + Attorney Fee.  In year 2016, for FY 2018, the H1B base filing fees, increased from  $325 to $460. Below table is a high level summary from FY 2018 quota as of writing, it maybe subject to change as we approach towards the filing date.  If any changes, we will update this accordingly.    Also, you can Read Summary of H1B Filing Fee – Who pays for What ? .

H1B Fee – Paid TowardsAmount in USD
 Base filing fee$460
AICWA Fee$750  or $1,500
Fraud prevent & detection fee$500
Fee based on Public Law 114-113 ( if applicable)$4000
Premium processing fee (Optional)$1,225
Immigration Attorney FeeVaries from $500 to $3000

H1B 2019 Case Tracker  :
Did you work with attorney and sent all documents to apply for FY 2019 ?  It is quite hard for applicants to know the general status of everyone to understand their situation. We have put together a tracker along with good graphs for analysis. It is completely anonymous as we do not capture your case number or any personal information. It is community contributed data, the more you add, the better for everyone, including  You !

What’s the latest news on H1B Visa 2019 ?
Below are some of the major news updates on H1B 2019 season. You can check H1B Visa 2019 Cap Count Tracker – Latest News Updates for full details

You can bookmark this page and check this page for updates on H1B FY 2019 season.
Do you have any questions on next H1B 2019 season ?


Other Articles


  1. Wow. Looking at the numbers of Deloitte and EY, I have lost hope that there is going to be only 130k applications for this year. I am feeling that there gonna be 175k applications for this year. I literally have 35 days left in my STEM.I am just praying that the best should happen. I have already started losing hope

  2. @ Franc and @Sam Whittaker….

    Soo….we could expect to see around maybe 160’000 applications…. and @Sam Whittaker you said maybe 50% are AD……

    Wouldnt 80’000 be too many AD applications? or does that seem to be possible?

    • I think the numbers below regarding E&Y and Deloitte include transfer/extensions… This week I’m feeling more pessimistic, but still don’t see more than 150K.

      From 2010 to 20016 the % of approved US AD was 13.6%. Considering that US AD have better change of being approved, they should have represented less than 13.6% of total applications (something like 10% of petitions and 13.6% of approvals).

      I find it hard to believe that a 10% can go up to 50% in only a few of years. The proportion will be higher for sure, but my guess is 30%…

      If total applications is , say, 140K, with 30% US AD, minus 2K for Chile&Singapore, with “real caps” of 75K+25K…

      The chances for a US AD are: 86%. Even in a worse case, I don’t see my odds falling below 75%

  3. 3 more days to go for the collection of the H1b docs., anxiety has already started and the waiting game will be more destructive, everyone keeps telling my check got cashed, I have received the notice from attorney, received a call from my employer, attorney sent an email stating my case was picked, am waiting for those golden words to be heard at least this year, Hope this year I will crack this lottery and my attorney will call/send and email to let me know that my H1B is picked. God bless me and all others who have been waiting for years. All the best guys.

    • Mate, I can sympathize as I am in same shoes, but there’s nothing you can do. Just relax and concentrate on your work. You will get to know by May 1st week anyway.

    • same here! couple of months of STEM left. reading posts after lottery is really painful when ppl start flooding with results and we are left wondering where the heck is my spam folder… maybe something went there 😀 hopefully we will get this year. Third time is a lucky charm.
      Thanks guys for putting efforts on predictions.

  4. Deloitte – 14,500 applicants
    Ernst & Young – 24,500 applicants

    Now these US consulting firms too have learnt to exploit loopholes.

    Thanks to our creative Desi team !

  5. With all due respect to people predicting final count for this year, I dont think the LCA calculation is a good predictor of total petitions. This is my 4th attempt, and I have noticed that every year there are a few overzealous members who post their analysis based on LCA submissions. These analyses have been as wrong as blind predictions done in random posts by idiots like Baba.

  6. All the best to every genuine applicant!!

    I work for a very reputed small organization with employees less than 250 that puts 3-5 petitions at max every year and this time is just 2.

    5th timer here, not picked in lottery any time so no topic of RFE’s , denials etc.,

    All your comments..LCA, Franc, Sam, BeStrong… Keeping my hopes alive inspite gone through this pain several times

    Hope for the best at least this year with all fake Indian consultancies dropped from game and I wish this process should go through much more hard and stringent policies to benefit genuine applicants..


  7. Do not listen to others or check the forums every now and then.
    If your intentions are right, paperwork is correct, you will get the VISA.

    I listened to others, followed the forums and my life was a wreck.
    I got the visa ultimately though.

    Please focus on your paperwork and try to remain calm. And have patience because you will need a lot of patience if you wanna come to the states.

    • “focus on your paperwork”? -> I think that’s the attorneys’ job

      “If your intentions are right, paperwork is correct, you will get the VISA.” -> I don’t think the lottery takes into account my good intentions

      “I listened to others, followed the forums and my life was a wreck.” -> I don’t see any comment here that could wreck someone’s life…

      Are you’re sure you’re in the right forum? This forum is about the H-1B lottery

      • LOL…. nice one frank, seems like

        @Sincere Advice., you have worked very hard and paid a lot to some desi company to be here., else you might have been a part of some body shop company who will make you collect your own documents…. @Sincere Advice please keep your Sincere Advice with you.

        • This forum is basically a nervous breakdown dump. What’s the point in LCA predictions. Just wait another week and focus on your current job if you have one. 33% or 53% chance in this lottery will not make it any better than a coin toss. Neither will bitching each other out on an anonymous forum. Everyone calm down.

          • If you dont like it why you even care? This is public forum people post their opinion. You can skip and move ahead. Instead of looking at these LCA predictions even you could focus on your current job too!

          • @ Sam Whittaker, this precise item looks like a fool, who has a bad mouth, probably he was taught and bought up like that., seems like he is rating all the anonymous forums, @ Relax if you have a job you better concentrate on that, don’t try to become a sadhu here, you dash dash dash.

          • @ Sam Whittaker, this precise item(Relax) looks like a fool, who has a bad mouth, probably he was taught and bought up like that., seems like he is rating all the anonymous forums, @ Relax if you have a job you better concentrate on that, don’t try to become a sadhu here, you dash dash dash.

          • Problem here is, Currently the forum is overwhelmed by AD applicants and their comments. Non-AD are feeling bit uncomfortable somehow flushing out frustation out of their mind. I will try to ignore these comments from now on.
            “Never wrestle with a pig. You get dirty, and besides, the pig likes it”
            -George bernard shaw

  8. Hi People!

    So I have a couple questions and hopefully someone can help me.. I have been looking at the conversation before but I dont see how some of you get some information….

    1) How do you get the H1B Visa tracker number? (@Hopeful)
    2) How did you got to the 13.5% of the pool being AD? (@Franc) Wouldn’t the Indian IT firms and the consultancies dropping their numbers mean that this % might go up? Hoping that there is no lottery for AD…. do you guys see this as a likely event?
    3) What happens if no announcement is given on friday? does that mean there is no lottery? until when does USCIS accept petitions?

    Thanks for all your good comments guys you really give some of us hopes!!

    • There will be lottery for sure. The number of AD applications will break 20k mark as there are lot of people on OPT and STEM OPT working in USA. alteast 50% of total application will be AD

        • Lottery will happen this time too, but many BIG IT companies from India are not sponsoring this time.. it is because of heavy documentation or reputation.. so it will be less count compare to previous year..
          may be 160K….

      • Soooo then following the estimated applicant pool of 160’000…. you would estimate that 80’000 would be AD?

        • 3rd Timer – Italy,

          We have no way to estimate how much are AD since there is no data for us to work with. So it’s just a guess.

          All we know is that for 2010-2016, an average of 13.6% applications were AD ones.

    • Answering your second question.. if you take a look at the product companies and the big 4 audit firms, these are the bulk H1b petitioners for AD. These guys have filed too many LCAs that they would easily exceed the 20k count for AD.

      Apart from these, there are Desi consultancies that file AD petitions. Even a lot of applications from Indian outsourcing include AD petitions.

      Add to this lesser number US based companies like mine that on am average file about 200 petitions for AD.

      Now include folks that were unpicked from previous two years and now on OPT.

      I cannot see a way out of lottery. I would say AD would easily be upwards of 60,000.

      My guess is, AD petitions have way better probability to get picked in the 65k pool compared to the 20k pool.

    • Lottery will happen this time too, but many BIG IT companies from India are not sponsoring this time.. it is because of heavy documentation or reputation.. so it will be less count compare to previous year..
      may be 160K….

    • 3rd Timer – Italy,

      If you go to this link:

      Last table, it tells you the number of H-1B approvals and the % with US AD. You can do a sumproduct in excel to get to the ~14% (from 2010-2016)

      This percentage is going to increase for sure because number of OPT students has been increasing substantially over the years.

      Also, fewer applications from Indian outsourcing companies further contributes to the higher percentage (outsourcing higher few US Master’s)

      • Hi Franc,

        I’m not sure whether I read http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2018/03/29/h-1b-visa-approvals-by-us-metro-area/ correctly, but I think the % of H-1B approval with a US AD should be at least 20k/(20k+65k) = 23.5%? How come it could be 14%? Did I miss anything?

    • For your question directed at me, that’s simply a tool you can find here on Redbus which allows applicants to enter details and updates about their case. I’m just surprised to see so few cases logged.

      Click the H1b 2019 case tracker button a bit further up on this page

    • I have the same question, my attorney does not communicate with me directly , only through HR, and doesnt share any information with me. I feel like blind folded now.

  9. The race is on, but only 49 cases added to the H1b Visa tracker so far. This seems really low. What are the implications here? Does anyone here remember how many cases were added last year? The tracker only does one for the last five years.

    And thanks to all of you number crunchers! You inspire hope to us genuine applicants

    • Masters are greater than Regular due to less filling by Indian IT companies and also no one is applying in the wage 1 category or few from Indian IT companies (Masters stands a good chance). The impact is started to get visible. All the best guys :-).

      • Masters always had a good chance, given the reserved 20k pool and then re-entry in 65k pool…
        That’s a return gift from US government for pouring money into their economy…
        Even some Master’s people apply through fake consultancies(which will reduce now), just to stay in US to pay back the loans…

  10. BABA predictions…………:————————–)

    220K applications = 60 K selected – 25k rfe rejections…………….


  11. Guys,
    Any news from USCIS?
    Do they give any indication in these five days about the volume of applications coming in historically speaking?

      • Brother,
        What do you think I have been doing since yesterday now. Maybe prior to that too. Lol
        I have presented all the data taking all the perspectives and patterns.
        The consensus is somewhere between 130K -160 K. Depending on how you look at it.

          • I’m a wreck now. So nervous. I gotta a job and a family on the line. Super big thanks for BeStrong, Sam, and LCA for the predictions. Though there’s probably still gonna be the lottery but the numbers you guys came up with makes me fill a bit more hopeful.

            Best of luck to everyone and

      • @ksk

        You are probably such a lazy a** who doesn’t even wanna read previous comments and just come here and ask for latest updates…

        at least have appreciation for their work, read previous comments and wait if someone posts anything..

    • No. USCIS will not publish any info until Apr 6. If they stop accepting applications on Friday it will imply that there will be a lottery.

      • Admin, what do you think about all the analysis we have done coming up with numbers. You are responsible for this website for some years now, must have seen a lot and observed a lot. What do you think?

        • BeStrong,
          Good work with analysis…But, it can be tricky with the data analysis, as I am not sure, how much you can rely on it in terms of data. With different start dates, etc, it can be misleading at times…Let’s see 🙂


    Got a really good data on them :

    For FY 2015, FY 2016, FY 2017, FY 2018, they filed 1000- 2000s LCAs. Hundreds and hundreds of LCA s were filed with 10, 15, 20 employees.

    Last year FY 2018 = 1535 LCA filed with a staggering 1098 LCA with 30 employees each LCAs.

    Dividing Employees into categories. Eg., 1 LCA =20 employees; 10 employees in new employment and rest in they amended the petition or something.

    This year Cognizant has filed almost all of their LCAs in between June to Sept 30.
    Total number of LCAs = 4783

    ALL SINGLE 1 to 1 LCAS. NO MULTIPLES AT ALL FOR THEM THIS YEAR. I checked for April to Sept 30 cycle as well. Many of them, wage level 3.

    Possibly 4873 employees for petitions this year vs thousands of them last year.

    Let me tell how much effect there is : filtered for 1,5,10,15,20,25,30 .

    Last year employee count = 13,932
    This year = 4873

    • MARCH 31, 2018 09:01:29 CDTREPLY Sam Whittaker
      LCA ,Franc,
      I run few searches on DOL LCA website. Found some interesting stuff.

      Certification date:

      Start Date Range:
      work start date from From:
      work start date to To:
      End Date Range:
      work end date from From:
      work end date to To:
      Certification date:

      Total 234,682

      Interesting some of the the outsourcing companies have filed LCA between these Start date between apr and aug. Mostly its cognizant almost all of their petitions rest of them bombed aug-oct . HCL has stayed low profile

      (apr and august)
      Congnizant has flooded with 4,869 petitions.
      rest Infosys 1,452
      TCS 1,246
      Accenture 62
      HCL 513
      capgemini 198

      between august and oct cognizant has filed just 4 LCA
      Their overall total is 4873 from apr to october.

      (august and oct)
      Infosys overall 3,246
      HCL 713
      Accenture 1,176
      CApgemini 2,489
      TCS 6,243

      I hope Extension/ transfer diff has exponentially increased otherwise it going to look like last year.

      MARCH 31, 2018 14:47:12 CDTREPLY LCA

      New H1B cannot start before Oct 1st since that’s when the new H1B season begins. Unless you are seeing for example Apr or Aug of the next year (2020 in this case), they will have to be transfers.

      MARCH 31, 2018 09:03:40 CDTREPLY Sam Whittaker
      Also remember to eliminate few cases for who start at apr and end at apr itself. I just took a comprehensive look until sept 30th as end date.

      MARCH 31, 2018 09:09:56 CDTREPLY Sam Whittaker
      google 3,129
      Facebook 761
      intel 1,514
      qualcomm 510
      linkedin 263
      MS 2,430
      Dell 319
      Forgot tech mahindra 3,667
      wipro 1,598
      IBM 3,135

      • Yea Sam, but important thing is that the 4800 LCAs are all 1 to 1. They used file multiples. Big time multiples. last year filed 1098 for the same time period. I checked on visajobs.com to see how they are dividing the employees on those 30 multiples. They are dividing into 6 new employments in a 30 multiple LCA . Just counting down on that one alone ;

        6 * 1098 = 6588 new emplyments
        I am not even going to other LCAs right now and it has already exceeded 4800 employments of this year

      • I want to say something here. Going back and filtering back from April to Aug is pure paranoid behavior from your part.

        Most of the attorneys are busy handling teammates l transfers, amendments and intentions l extensions that they will not have the bandwidth to file new cases as early as April start date.

        Best is to stay within the dates of August to October. That’s when majority of the new filings happen.

    • We should analyze data on software companies based in US . (Amazon, eBay, Fb, etc … These guys take up US Grads instead of bachelors from India. If the numbers down there, we can get some trend on the condition of US grad applications!

    • Good work, but I think we have reached a good stopping point.

      You already have the total worker# of each year, which is really the most important number we have.

      The total petition # is decided by total worker# * new petition %.

      We have the first part, and we are trying to predict the second part based on past data.

      That said, what you just posted shows that Cognizant has been taking up lots of petitions with relatively few LCAs in the past, but that has changed this year. This would bring the worker#-to-LCA# ratio down. But we already have the total worker # so this doesn’t really tell us much that we don’t already know.

    • Guys,
      Any news from USCIS?
      Do they give any indication in these five days about the volume of applications coming in historically speaking?

  13. Well. Sorry if I had hurt anyone’s feelings. Never knew my comment would have made such a huge impact. I don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings. And Just FYI,everyone has her/his own problems. World is always an easier place for guys. You people can’t understand the struggles a woman has to undergo.Still Sorry once again if I had hurt anyone. Appreciate the efforts of all the people here. I just wish all of us get picked up this year. Regarding the comment on consultancies, I have a Masters in Mechanical Engineering. My dream is to work on that field some day. Without sponsorship, I can’t even dream of doing that. And there is no point in explaining anything any more here as you are in no mood to hear. I just wish all of us get selected this year.

    • First of all :
      1. Why are you assuming that this is an all Guy’s forum? I can be a girl. How do you know?

      2. Second of all, if you are so driven by your dreams then why is there a necessity to fulfill your dreams only in the US? Why you wanna get bound by H1b which doesn’t allow to work for multiple employers, no startup chances and what not?

      3. Masters is an Ever-Green field with loads and loads of opportunities in the US and around the globe. I have tons of friends in Mechanical. Why are you not able to land up with a job yet instead you choose to be doing all kind of fraud

    • As i previously told, I fully support you.

      I even asked you why you stopped with only 3 applications. You should have applied 10 or 20 H1b for you.

      After all, there are so many ‘guy’ frauds out there. We need equal representation of frauds from women like you too. You go girl ! I fully support you !

  14. Plus you get to realize that she predicts numbers based on the number of filings done by her Firm. Since 2014-2015, her firm became more popular because of her coming on social media. Popularity brings more clients.
    Thats one of my theories

  15. Emily’s Prediction Through Years

    FY 2016- 200,000 Actual – 233,000
    FY 2017 – 250,000 Actual – 236,000
    FY 2018- 200,000 Actual – 199,000

    Not always correct guys, not always correct !!
    ( Although I love her work and she has a very kind heart for us )

  16. this time trump only selecting 10 + years experience guys.. 50k people.. and 10k people fake OPT guys.. for running universities..

    internal lottery predictions.. guys let’s fingers crossed.. and select real experienced guys.. its trump time..

    goooos bumpsss..

  17. Hello,

    I heard from my Attorney, That the companies submitting bulk applications will not be considered in the lottery? Is this correct?

    • I don’t think there’s data of FY19 for that, so anyone’s guess is as good as anyone else’s.

      I think Sam or Franc posted some historical data from USCIS and it was ~14%. We have no way to see the trend or to deduce if this is of any indication for this year though.

    • From 2010 to 2016, 13.6% of the applications were AD.

      But given the drop in applications from Indian consultancies and more OPT students, I think the proportion is going to be much higher this year.

      If it’s 30%, out of 150K petitions, and assuming a real cap of 75K+25K, doing the math… 82% chances of winning (for AD)

  18. Guys,
    I know all the data is pointing to 130K or even 120K but we have to realize that there is a definite rise in 1 to many LCAs for bigger numbers too. 100 employees to 1 LCA, 75 to 1, 50, etc. Although all the numbers below this are showing a big decrease hence the total number of employees going down.
    But do keep in mind that if they higher number LCAs get utilized to the max this time, you will see a higher number of petitions for sure.
    Therefore, would suggest to keep it around 150K if not more.

    • I agree that we could definitely see 150k, it’s a real possibility. But didn’t you already sum the total # of workers, regardless the size of the LCA? If that’s the case, it doesnt matter if these workers are spread out in more LCAs or concentrated in less LCAs, it’s still gonna be the same # of petitions for them.

      Assming your data is complete, the only factor that could affect total petitions at this point, is the number of renewal/extension/transfer.

        • I totally agree that we could be all wrong and next week USCIS will come out and say they received 160k or even 180k.

          I’m just pointing out that your reason for worrying (bigger LCAs get fully utilized) doesn’t seem to make sense in this case.

        • I mean, if the actualy number ends up in say 180k, it would be because that the # of renewal/transfer is lower than we expected and nothing else.

  19. HAHA. Check this out!!!!

    A person who is filing 3 petitons thru 3 consultancies and person seeking reservation for women for h1b and person who is proud that she paid for all the 3 H1b petitons has posted in immigrationgirls blog.


    April 2, 2018

    Last year you predicted the count to be 200k and it turned out to be 199k. I am not sure why you are hesitating to guess a specific number this year. There are some jobless people in other websites saying the count would just be 130k for this year based on some LCA calculations. I am not sure if the LCA count they are posting are accurate. I am not sure how they could the LCA numbers which Emily could not get. So we all want you to make an educated guess of the total number of expected peitions this year.

    • “I am not sure why you are hesitating to guess a specific number this year.”
      Because she is not sure.!
      The irony is that she is saying that we are jobless when she is the one paying consultancies and all. lol

    • You guys have done an excellent job by scanning through the LCA data. I know that there is no way to formulate an exact correlation between LCA count and H1b count but the pattern looks to be definitive. I would be extremely surprised if the ceiling of 160K(20% reduction even though the general trend looks to be > 40% reduction in LCA count) is breached for FY19. Best of luck to all of you!

    • I was about to copy this here, but did a refresh before copying., this lady seems like a crazy one., every other word and sentence was good rather this absurd sentence ” There are some jobless people in other websites “., she should be a crazy and sick lady.

      • she thinks Emily is direct messenger from uscis and dol., if emily can’t ger those numbers does mean she doesn’t know how to get those numbers., she can’t predict does mean she is not good at numbers like others, she might have given one wild guess last year which proved correct doesn’t mean she is always correct and people determining numbers thru LCA filings are wrong. God bless Gayathri and EMily!!

    • “ImmigrationGirl

      April 2, 2018

      ? I’m always hesitant to guess for fear of being way off. I’m thinking somewhere around the 180,000 mark this year. The majority of our petitions are advanced degree filings, but I’m not sure if it is higher than last year. We are not yet done with our filings and still doing some data entry. Once that is done, I should have a better picture.”

      I have a theory where she may be getting blindsided and off the mark this time.

      There is a drastic drop in one to one LCA (100 K) which has not been seen since 4 years now. I assuming these small consultancies from Hyderabad and NJ who get the bachelor guys most of the time. Since her Firm is getting AD guys, she may be not knowing about this 100k drop. I am sure she is busy filing and looking at LCAs. Why should she? She is not sure about AD too. There may be a slight drop there too , you may not know

      • Oh there is another story too. There is association call IT serve google their website and who are running it and attorneys representing that association.

    • She is probably too sexist and female chauvinistic to assume immigration”girl” knows everything.
      God bless the god for creating such creatures.

    • hahahaha !! I really enjoyed her comments but this one was the best one so far!! 😀 I hope we get some more comments like this to get through this brutal waiting period!! lol

    • hahaha too funny. Some people are just so pathetic…

      Gayathri, USCIS will smell fraud as soon as they open your applications and they will deny you even without an RFE. You won’t be allowed to ever get an H-1B
      But most likely, those 3 employers you paid for, just took your money and didn’t even apply.

      Also, just because Emily was lucky in predicting last year means nothing this time around. I have the feeling Emily has no clue what the actual number will be.

  20. Ok,
    Sam and All,
    For April 1 to Oct 1 cycle here are the numbers for FY 2014 and FY 2019
    Year —-># employees (one to one LCAs)—–> # employees (non 1-1)—-> Total employees —-Applicants
    2014—-> 214,042 —— —-> 268,606 —— —-> 486,648 ———> 124 K
    2019 —-> 214,894 ———-> 237,412 ———-> 452,306———> TBD

    The number of employees in 2019 is less than 2014! Following the same pattern as June -Oct cycle
    We can see the bigger the sample, the bigger the difference!
    That can mean more renewals!

    • BeStrong,

      Thanks for the very impressive and diligent work.

      At this point, the most meaningful numbres are: total # of workers of each year, and % of new petitions of each year.

      We have the former for FY19, but have to deduce the latter by interpolating data from previous years.

      Based on the data you posted, we can clearly see the correlation between the 2 numbers, and I think predictions based on these numbers are the most reliable we can do. Therefore, FY19 should be in FY14’s ball park. Furthermore, it should be less than FY14 because a) total worker # is slightly lower, and b) both the data trend and logical analysis supports more transfer/extension for FY19.

      So I believe FY14’s total petition would be the ceiling, and FY19’s petition should be 80% – 100% of FY14’s. So 100k – 124k

    • I woke up today feeling very pessimistic…

      Isn’t it possible that some transfers, renewals will be added within the next few weeks? I have the feeling this is too good to be true. Maybe we are underestimating the number of LCA’s… I’m feeling towards a 180K

  21. Emily has predicted the numbers to be 180k.She is mostly correct for the last few years. So I am guessing the number is gong to be around 180k only. Lets hope that she is wrong this time.

  22. Here is the answer to Sam’s query of taking April to Oct 1 cycle

    Year —->(one to one LCAs)—–> Total LCAs
    2014—-> 214,042 —— —-> 243,187
    2019 —-> 214,894 —— —-> 239, 395

    A little increase in one to one LCA in 2019 ( 196 K in 2019 to 180K employees (June to Oct 1 ))
    A little decrease in total LCAs in 2019 (remember: 408 K employees vs 414k in 2014 ( June to Oct 1 ) )


    I might do calculations on no. of employees as well when I get some time!

    • What about the one-to-many LCA? If it remains unchanged then total would be 214894+211710 = 426604

      We will land up around same 140K-160K

  23. Ok Guys,
    Big Concluding Analysis
    We are gonna see FY 2014 numbers. Everything is pointing out towards it. Here we go

    I have done the same filtering process for each year and divided the number of employees attached to LCAs on the basis of non-one to one LCAs and one to one LCAs. Here is the total number of employees based on that

    Year —-># employees (one to one LCAs)—–> # employees ( non 1-1)—-> Total LCAs—-Applicants
    2014—-> 180000 ————————-> 234,592 ——————–> 414,542——–> 124 K
    2015—-> 217,638————————-> 314,989 ——————–> 532,627——–> 172K
    2016—-> 284,500————————-> 368,604——————–> 653,104——–> 233K
    2017—-> 299,341————————-> 360,604——————–> 659,945——–> 236K
    2018—-> 291,092————————->261,092——————–> 552,184——–> 199K
    2019—-> 196529————————-> 211,710——————–> 408,239——–> TBD

    1. Note how an increase in one to one LCA is canceling out the non 1 to one when compared to 2014. The numbers are significantly very low since 2014.

    2. Note the drop we see last year was due to less filing for non 1 to 1 LCAs ( read big companies ) but not the 1-1. This time everything is dropping

    I will be very surprised if it goes past 140 K this year to be very honest. Everything is pointing out towards 130K. With more number of renewals, maybe even less. Who Knows ??

    This is the most educated guess we can have here. Unless anyone has any other conclusion. Please use data to back it up. I guess we all fed up with hearing increasing OPTs, increasing H4, increasing scrutiny and what not. I hope the DOL is 100% right now.

      • Number of left over applications from 2018-114k
        Number of new applications 2018-2017=40K

        There is decrease in the number of applications from 2017 to 2018. Based upon last years RFE’s, New Third party work site things and all I took out 20% if the same trend continues this year.

      • Just one point I want to add here – Most LCAs were filed before Mar 23 memo so thats a positive as well as no all LCAs would get converted to H1B filing .

    • But there are LCA filed between Apr and aug for new employment. I did open up a bunch of LCAs’ to confirm for new employment. congnizant has flooded about 4000 LCA with start date of june 15th.

      • Sam,
        I have given June 1 as a starting date. So Cognizant (Evil Corp.) is getting covered !!!
        I am sure you are right about LCA being filed in April and May. But I think it must be getting neutralized, in fact, overwhelmed by transfers and renewals. plus 5 years worth of analysis is painting the picture for us.

    • Yea, I am hoping that there will be last minute withdrawals due to memos and all that stuff too. Things become exciting when you start playing with number !!

    • While I don’t disagree with the logic behind applying these stats, i’m going to go ahead and assume somehow things turn out worse and its 150-175k.

      One small side point using your numbers: I could be wrong but I think 140,122 k is the expected value. I’m not sure if looking at ratios makes sense

      Year— 1 to 1 non 1 to 1 total applicants 1to1/app non1to1/app total/app
      2014—- 180000 234,592 414,542 124000 0.688888889 0.528577275 0.2991253
      2015—- 217,638 314,989 532,627 172000 0.790303164 0.546050814 0.322927677
      2016—- 284,500 368,604 653,104 233000 0.818980668 0.632114681 0.356757882
      2017—- 299,341 360,604 659,945 236000 0.788398515 0.654457521 0.357605558
      2018—- 291,092 261,092 552,184 199000 0.683632666 0.762183445 0.360387117
      2019—- 196529 211,710 408,239 >140122< 0.712984243 0.661858582 0.34323541
      avg 0.75404078 0.624676747 0.339360707

      diff btw 2019 ratios and avg of ratios above 0.041056537 -0.037181835 -0.003874703
      Goal seek to minimize average of 3 lines above -1.4803E-16

      (Second time AD applicant here struggling to keep positive and avoiding getting hopes up on stats that aren't concrete)

    • i totally agree with your prediction , every year is coming down ..
      it may sound very silly question , but i am still confuse in “one to one LCAs and non 1-1” what is the major difference , can you please explain.


      • 1-1 LCA –> 1 LCA is applied to DOL for certification for 1 positions.
        1-many –> 1 LCA is applied to DOL for many positions of same job title and SOC code and wage level and salary. Like the outsourcing companies file 1 LCA for 100 computer system analysts/ programmer analyst.

        • My Manager sent me an Article i don’t know how authentic is that but need you reviews as well

          No minimum 3-year window for H-1B visa-holders (Heading)
          H-1B visas will be granted for only the time the beneficiary has specified work in the US, a marked departure from the current visa norm of three years + a likely three-year extension.
          Now, there will be detailed checking of the company’s assignments, the H-1B beneficiary’s specialty occupation and the duration for which they are needed. So, visa-holders may not even get three years

          There were other points as well , but if above point is valid then how outsourcing companies can file 1-Many LCA against one candidate ? they have to show all the projects and companies to file for 3-Years , and if they fail to justify then candidate may not get H1-B approval or may get limited time of H1-B Visa (May be 6-months or 1-year)

          What do you say about this .

          • He is totally correct!
            If you are a third party employee, that’s gonna be the criteria.
            I have a friend in Washington DC who applied for H1b last year, he got RFE twice, got the decision just 2 weeks back. He got a 1-year visa only. He works as a third party

          • Ok whats your opinion about following point(Its part of same article )

            No moving between projects, companies; more expensive paperwork(Heading)
            Moreover, H-1B visa-holders wouldn’t be able to move between projects/firms once in America.
            Trump’s administration has made it mandatory for companies to establish that H-1B visa beneficiaries in the US have “specific and no speculative qualifying assignments in a speciality occupation” for the entire visa period.
            This will in turn increase unnecessary, expensive and detailed documentation for both visa-holders and companies.

            It means no body can apply for H1-B transfer anymore?

          • What you just posted is true, but it has nothing to do with LCAs.

            What you posted is saying that the previous policy is to always grant 3 years of H1B, regardless of how long you are actually needed. Now they can grant <3 years, so if the project lasts 1 year, they'll just grant 1 year.

            This has nothing to do with LCAs, for example a company can still need 10 people of the same type of position, so instead of filing 10 LCAs separately, they may choose to file 1 single LCA for the 10 positions.

          • I totally understand that , it has nothing to do with LCA, and i am sorry if i am posting under wrong group discussion . Actually i am already working under H1-B Visa and recently got my 3-years extension after1-RFE(that took 2.5 months).
            i just wanted to discuss current H1-B rules.

        • Hi,

          not just outsourcing companies. even product companies do 1: many LCAs. Eg:
          Team of android engineers, will just have 1 LCA for say 10 petitions.

  24. Hi guys,
    It’s not a big deal if you don’t get picked in the lottery. I myself and my wife have gone through this thing few years back, and I can relate to what most of you are going through today. At one point point we even decided to move to Canada, applied and almost moved to Canada but fortunately we got our H1B approved. So what I am trying to say is please keep some options open and it will make life very easy for you. Good luck to all the genuine candidates.

    • I agree…great thoughts..this is my 4th time attempting and this time I honestly don’t care if it goes through or not (it might when I don’t need it). I have already better opportunity aligned in AP region from my current employer so I am happy to experience a change. It is very important to have backup option (s), it will definitely keep you stress level down. Good luck to all deserving and genuine applicants.

  25. With so much analysis on this forum, it seems a few obvious details have been missed out. There are a lot of H4 EAD workers filing for H1b this year – this a new set of applicants that will just get added to the overall pool.

    Second, while its great that extensive scrutiny is likely going to result in fewer applicants from desi consultancies and body shops, the fact remains that Congnizant an american company has been the biggest abuser of h1b program in recent past. 21k approval in 2016 and 29k approvals in 2017. (data is on Uscis website www.uscis.gov/sites/default/files/USCIS/Resources/Reports%20and%20Studies/Immigration%20Forms%20Data/BAHA/Approved_H1B_2017_Employers_3.2.18.pdf)

    Given the odds last year, 29k approval means that they should have filed for around 100k petitions or at least more than the total available h1b slots. If this isnt abuse of the program then god knows what is.

    Hope USCIS looks into the data that they publish and take certain actions. top 3 employers are taking up nearly 80% of all the approved slots for H1b jeopardizing everyone else’s plans.

    • I think number includes transfer/extension. If you add up the approved numbers from all companies, it’s way more than 85K.

  26. Guys,
    I have not seen any change in the number of LCA since two days now. I think we have an official final number ( 219 K for June 1 – Oct 1 cycle) here considering I saw the change happening on 31st near midnight.
    Sam, LCA,
    You guys have been tracking DOL for a while, what do you suggest?

  27. Been filing this thing since 2013, so good luck to everyone!

    OPT ran out, STEM extension ran out, and CPT ran out, still no winning ticket. All my friends already won it, this is crazy. I hope this is the year for me.

    Well, good luck everybody!

  28. Emily says USCIS wont be picking 15K more than cap without any reasoning!
    How many agree with emily? I dont agree with her!

      • Oh right! sorry misread.
        But still about >25K denials for FY18 how would 15K would suffice to fill the FY19 cap. USCIS has to go over 15K.

        • I agree, it has to be higher than 100K. Considering around 20% rejection rate last year, plus ~3.5K withdrawn or closed.
          If they pick only 100K it would mean that USCIS is being managed by a bunch of xenophobics who are refusing to do the job Congress directed them to do. I don’t believe this.

          The number of approved H-1B’s can go below 85K only when there is no demand (which is not the case with lottery). Last year it did because of the new bill. But 2 years in a row would not be ok.

          Emily is saying 100K only because that’s what happen last year. I don’t think she can be sure of what they will do this year…

    • Sam,
      You are correct but I will go with Emily as of now assuming 15K extra. She is an experienced lawyer and knows a lot about USCIS. Obviously, she could be wrong but I’ll stick with her just for now!
      Its better to have a conservative approach

      • When Emily was asked about the extra 10K excessively rejected last year and whether they would be added this year she said “I don’t think so” —-Translation: “I don’t know”

        A few weeks ago a partner of the immigration law firm my company is working with, came to my company for a presentation and said: The probabilities last year were: (85,000-6,800)/199,000=39%….

        I wanted to scream at her!!! She can’t do math/doesn’t know how this sh*t works…

        Sorry but I don’t trust numbers coming from lawyers…

        • Me too! I dont trust on their numbers. Lawyers are only good at making law points and from rule book and prev case references. On probility and statistics they suck.

        • If you guys are right, we can be having 110K and we are can well behaving around 130k -150 k ( my opinion based on the data analysis ). Basically, it is for certain that US Grads are gonna get picked!

  29. Hi Guys,

    Fedex tracking shows that my. H1 package was delivered at 6.15am today.

    Is this normal or Fedex messed it up?

  30. OK, guys,
    One more analysis. ( Yeah, I am turning mad now, totally berserk)

    Since the number of LCAs of 2014 and 2019 looking similar ( 209 K vs 219K), I filtered out a number of LCAs based on a number of employees as much as I can
    ( Based on 1, 2, 3 , 4, 5, 10 , 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, 40, 45, 50, 75, 100 ) . I tried to find out in between numbers too but I was getting significant numbers there so shunned it altogether. Found out the following :

    1. Number of one to one cases in 2019 is more
    FY 2019 = 196, 529
    FY 2014 = 180,670

    2. For a big number of employees per LCA, 2019 is definitely having more LCAs. But as the number goes smaller, cases for 2019 is getting lesser than 2014
    # of workers 100 – 291 (2019) -115 (2014)
    75 – 145 – 28
    50- 892 – 621
    45 – 97 – 6
    Everything else is lower

    3 . Total Number of employees based on these filtered LCAs ( no. of cases * number of workers )

    FY 2014 – 414, 542
    FY 2019 – 408, 237

    FY 2019 is having lesser workers despite having 219 K vs 209 K for FY2014

    Whats your take on it ???

    • My take on this is that I’m seeing a real possibility of No Lottery… These numbers are awesome and your work is outstanding…

      Even if LCA’s increase somewhat next week, this is looking so good…

      And USCIS should accept 110k. Anything less would lead to fewer then 85K. Two years in a row with less than 85K approvals at a time when demand is high would mean not fulfilling their Congress mandate.

      BeStrong you are awesome!

    • That’s some impressive work.
      Based on this:

      FY14 and FY19 have similar total number of workers involved in LCAs
      FY19 has more active H1Bs, so it’s reasonable to assume more transfers/extensions

      Therefore, FY19’s number of petitions should be lower than FY14’s, assuming the numbers are correct.

      • Here is the elephant in the room. Companies are not applying level 1 wages. LCA means nothing. With March 23rd memo half the pettitions will disappear. I am guessing no lottery to barely lottery

        • Why would companies not apply level 1 wages? Mine is wage level 1 because the position is wage level 1 . Master’s students majority of them start with wage level 1 rather than level 2/3/4!!!
          Since mine is wage level 1 i checked LCAs’ there are 1000s of petitions from companies like mine who are not h1b dependent like mine. If companies are h1b dependent and been hiring people from other countries under WL1 who position actually not Wage level 1 position will face challenges. Last year my friends who were all WL1 got h1b without a WL 1 RFE.

          • Companies will definitely apply for Wage 1. I am in this category. I am a non-IT guy and there is a huge gap between wage 1 and wage 2 salary for my occupation. In the end, you got to discuss your case with your employer and moreso with your lawyer. If the lawyer has a good standing and is confident, you got to go with them!

          • That depends on the location. Getting wage level 1 in Bay Area can get rfe because lot of companies like google, Apple, amazon, startups pay wage level 2 to fresh master graduates.

          • BeStrong,
            Exactly, In area where I work gap is 25K. But wage level 1 salary > lot of WL1 in salaries other areas in whole country.

        • IF you’re talking about these IT outsourcing and body shops not going for WL1 . Then I would agree. Legit companies will go with wage level 1 if the position calls for wage level 1.

          • I am not talking of IT outsourcing firms/consultancies. Take a look at FLC data given below. If 90% of people with same skill sets get wage level 2 salary and only 10% get wage level 1 salary, it can become a red flag to raise RFE.

            Area Code:41940
            Area Title:San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA MSA
            OES/SOC Code:15-1133
            OES/SOC Title:Software Developers, Systems Software
            Level 1 Wage:$49.74 hour – $103,459 year
            Level 2 Wage:$60.12 hour – $125,050 year
            Level 3 Wage:$70.49 hour – $146,619 year
            Level 4 Wage:$80.87 hour – $168,210 year
            Mean Wage (H-2B):$70.50 hour – $146,640 year

          • Dude you have misunderstood the concept of wage level. Assigning wage level depends on lot of factors Like type of company, position, supervision, etc. not all companies are apples and googles in bay area. If apple pays Wl2 salary for SOC 1133 that doesnt mean everybody has to pay wage level 2 as it depends on factors i previously mentioned.

          • If you fit in wage level 1 you apply for wage level 1 with all the necessary proofs like org chart, works under supervision (letter from manager, ceo etc etc) that position is entry level.

    • Here we go again :

      No. of one to one LCA count

      FY 2014 – 180 K
      FY 2015 – 217.5 K
      FY 2016 – 284 K
      FY 2017 – 299 K
      FY 2018 – 291 K
      FY 2019 – 195 K

      Can you guys see?
      There is a staggering 100 K difference in one to one LCAs this year when you compare to FY 2016 – FY 2018 ( 2015, 2016 disaster years )

      I think what happened in 2018 was the Big companies decreased the petitions a bit but the small and the consultancies didn’t pay a lot of attention and applied. 291 K is staggering considering the petitions dived by 37 K. Big companies chipped a little from there previous applications hence 37K.

      One by one is going down by 100K application this year. Kind of a huge deal.That means small companies and consultancies are going away from it.

      It cannot be a coincidence that no. of LCAs is 219K for 2019 and 324 K 2018
      The difference is exactly the reduction in one to one single LCAs

      • where did you get this number “FY 2019 – 195 K” . or its your analysis ? or if its correct number then what is the source link?

    • And although I am looking that there is a rise on the big number of workers per LCA (say 100, 50, 75), the number of LCAs with the small number below 40 are decreasing in a big way too. It is kinda canceling each other.
      So, I am expecting some drop from big companies but a big drop from smaller companies. More so, after the memos. Also, considering the fact that its renewal time for a lot of guys in there.
      So i am getting quite confident that we can see the FY 2014 numbers again.I am hovering around (130K – 150K ) . 130K can happen.

      • It looks like you are operating on the assumption that big companies tend to file LCAs of multiple positions? I think that does make sense.

        The FY18 data also supports the assumption that transfer/extension is going up.

        In combination with your total workers/positions data, I think this is really positive that FY19 will have fewer petitions than FY14.

    • Let’s just say that I cannot see the numbers going beyond 150 K. Its just doesn’t add up after much analysis based on government provided numbers and current circumstances.
      I will be really happy if you and Frac are right. Trust me. I have now spent a lot of time on this. I just don’t wanna make my expectations sky high.

    • one more important thing to understand ;

      If you guys have seen one analysis of mine when showed that the number of new applicant percentage was 62 % for FY 2018 vs 68% of FY 2017 for June to Sept cycle. It was 70% for FY2016

      As shown , one to one count being almost constant, you saw a good amount of decrease in new applicants for that cycle. There is a 8 % decrease in new applicants when compared from FY 2018 to FY 2016 , one to ome LCAs are not changing
      FY 2016 – 284 K
      FY 2017 – 299 K
      FY 2018 – 291 K

      I can infer that there must be more and more renewals happening each year.

    • BeStrong,
      LCA Start date can be 6 months before oct 1st. I saw many LCA between april 1st and Aug 1st for new employment. I reported that in one of the comments.
      Run it from April 1st.

      • Sam,
        I really find it hard to believe that companies will be putting up April dates for certification. There may be but I don’t see a lot of them doing it. Maybe, it can affect 5-8% of our analysis but that’s it. Emily mentioned that companies start as early as January with the process so I assuming they put June and onwards for LCA.
        Plus the whole point was to catch 1-2 big factors which affect the pattern of the number of applications on a solid database history. I think we have found the pattern and can be a basis for our own individual conclusions till the actual result comes out.
        Plus its too much work to start again, man !!! lol

  31. OK GUYS,
    THIS SHOULD START CLEARING STUFF A BIT MORE. (This is from June 1 to Sept 30 cycle )

    So, I filtered down the number of cases based on LCA requested depending on the number of workers. There is an option there. Found out the following :

    # of workers requested – 5
    FY 2018- 4883 cases
    FY2019 – 2769 cases
    Drop = 43 %

    FY 2018- 3502
    FY2019 – 2509
    Drop = 29 %

    FY 2018- 4490
    FY2019 – 258
    Drop = 93 % ( huge )

    FY 2018- 1582
    FY2019 – 813
    Drop = 48 %

    FY 2018- 1389
    FY2019 – 834
    Drop = 40 %

    As you can see these a very very significant decrease in the number of applications with multiple workers attached to single LCAs. The drops exceed the drops we are having in the total number of LCAs i.e, 33% ( current). This is quite significant if you ask me.

    • Big Thank You BeStrong! This is HUGE!

      LCA’s are falling by 40% minimum… Even if we assume flat renewals/transfers (too pessimistic if you ask me), the number of petitions will fall by soooo much…

      Let’s just hope that next week there won’t be an avalanche of new LCA’s….

  32. Giving a perspective on Big IT companies again (for June 1 – Sept 30 cycle ) LCAs

    TCS Limited
    FY 2019- 5,957
    FY 2018 – 7,684

    FY 2019- 2,462
    FY 2018- 5,841

    HCL Americas
    FY 2019 – 479
    FY 2018 – 1586

    FY 2019 – 1,598
    FY 2018 – 2,339

    TECH MAHINDRA (Americas)
    FY 2019- 3,549
    FY 2018 – 6,389

    FY 2019 – 2,164
    FY 2018 – 10,723

    Accenture LLP
    FY 2019- 1,157
    FY 2018 – 2,733

    FY 2019- 2,896
    FY 2018- 5,305

    Deloitte Consulting
    FY 2019- 3,568
    FY 2018- 4,541

    FY 2019-1,608
    FY 2018-1,918

    49059-25438 = 23621

    Approx 50% drop in LCAs here among these companies. Infosys drop is pretty drastic.

    • Good data analysis. All trends look positive, however, let’s see what the actual numbers come up as. 160k looks to be the ceiling for fy19.

      • Unless companies have decided to get away from renewals and transfers and instead of that hiring new people on OPT or from India, I don’t see it going beyond that.
        Remember, hiring new guys to mean Wage Level 2 in most of the cases and H1b cap for them. It doesn’t make a lot of sense if you do that. Plus, the trend over the years doesn’t seem to suggest that either even when there was a free pass applying for the H1b !!

    • Thank you BeStrong for pulling this! I just love to stare at this numbers…

      1. Big IT companies – 50% drop
      2. Fraudulent Indian Consultancies – 100% drop (if they only got denials last year why waste money on an year with even more scrutiny?)
      3. US companies hiring OPT’s – 15% drop (finding a job on OPT this year was much more difficult than in the past. There may be more OPT’s, but employment is much lower)

      Overall – possibly 35% to 40% – 120K to 130K petitions

      Last year USCIS accepted 75K regular + 25K Masters (100K real cap)
      This year they will have to assume the higher rejection rate, so the real cap will be at least 110K (minimum in my opinion)

      Last year I think they only issued about 75K H-1B (because of the unexpectedly high rejection rate)
      I wish they would add these 10K to this year’s cap… No idea if they will do this… If they do, the real cap would be a sweet 120K

      • Let’s keep our fingers crossed and hope that 160k is the worst we can have. Any number below this is a bonus. Hope that this is the last H1B lottery and it gets replaced by merit based selection.

      • Franc,
        I love your enthusiasm and I really want to believe what you saying but I want to point out few things :

        1. Fraudulent companies will try for H1bs. You won’t see a 100% drop. Maybe 50%

        2. OPT to hire has definitely dropped for issuing H1bs no matter how many students are
        working on OPT. Companies are not willing to get into a painstaking process of h1b
        applications, RFE paperwork, money and most importantly time. Remember, there is
        no PP. Last year was a shocker for them, this year they know.

        3. As of now, the LCA has not increased. It has been at least 24 hours since I checked. I am assuming DOL has been updated to date but I will wait for a day or two. If numbers remain same, there is a definite 33% drop in LCAs.

        Therefore I am seeing 150K (-/+ 10%)

        4. Regarding the adding up the petitions based on denials, historically speaking USCIS adds around 15K (5 K masters and 15 K general) for anticipated denials. I know the denial rates were huge last season, but we got to realize that they are not bound to give 85K visas so I don’t see them adding more than that. And current admin certainly doesn’t want that. 100k will be the number.

        If everything falls into place, we can certainly see 130K applications. Yes. But I don’t want to raise my hope so much and get terribly disappointed.

        BTW 2014 had 124K applicants with 209K LCAs. So with 219K LCAs, 130K applicants might happen.

        • India nationals that filed for H1B in 2009 are still waiting for green cards and will hit their 9th anniversary this year (those who filed in 2008 are now getting their green cards)

          Just this bit of information (and the fact that LCA have to be renewed every 3 years) makes me believe that renewals will increase for sure.

          If in 2014 209K LCA’s -> 124K, this year the difference has to be much higher. So 219K LCA’s this year means something really cool.

          But I agree that if LCA’s continues to increase next week it would be a nightmare…

          Also, a real cap of 120K is probably too much of a wishful thinking… I know…

      • No. It is for h1b jobs with start dates between June and October.

        Because this is the time period in which LCA filing for new H1b happen.

    • Dude. Seriously you pulled all this data :-O Man. U have quite some patience. Wow man. Atleast for the efforts you and Franc have put in the past 2 days, I want the actually count to be between 130-150k. But I’m still expecting a nightmare of the count being 175k

      • I agree with you. This analysis is mind blowing from Franc and BeStrong.
        As for me – wake me up when the lottery ends 🙂

  33. All these years I haven’t applied for H1B as I strongly believe that the employer should be genuine and I must go through the correct path. This time around my employer finally applied for my H1B visa but LCA was filed late on Mar 28, 2018. Can you guys please help me to know if my petition would get submitted to USCIS before the deadline ends. My attorney has said that they will try their best but they cant give any guarantees. Please help me with ur opinion.

    • At this point it’s really in the hands of the DoL. If they can get it certified before Apr 6, you are good. Normally it takes 7 business days, so there’s a good chance you can get it in time.

      • Thanks. Even after getting the certified LCA, it has to be signed by my employer. Dont know if the physical copy has to be signed or there is an exchange of soft copy. Exchange of physical copy would mean than LCA has to be certified latest by Mar 4. I am really anxious.

    • If it wasn’t certified as of March 28, it is a tight call.

      You should suggest attorney to file h1b by selecting LCA pending instead of waiting for it to be certified.

      Once you receive rfe, then you can provide your certified lca document.

      • Thanks Reezee! I would suggest this option to my attorney if LCA is not certified by Apr 4. Is this a valid option though? As far as I know, H1B petition cant be submitted without a certified LCA.

        • April 4 is late. Do it immediately and file H1b. Don’t wait for LCA.

          This is legal and USCIS has provision for this.

          • Thanks. I will drop an email to my attorney right away to consider this as an option. With God’s grace all genuine petitions would get selected in FY19 lottery.

    • First Timer,
      This looks very very tight for you.

      It takes 5 business days to get LCA. Even more, if your company is filing LCA for the very first time ever. DOL verifies the FEIN in that case. That takes up 3 more days. Totaling to 8 business days. Not to mention, DOL site breaks down all the time due to heavy traffic as the April 1 approaches.

      Basically, the earliest you can get the LCA is 4th of April, I believe. Just 2 days before the window ends.

      As I said, you in a very very tight spot.

      • Thanks. Mine is a Non-H1B dependent company and has filed LCA in the past so those additional 3 days wont be required. And I agree that I am in a very tight spot. @Reezee has suggested to file H1B with LCA pending. I will check this with my attorney to see if its an acceptable option in case certified LCA is not received by Apr 4.

        Thank you.

          • Thanks @BeStrong. I would say that its the very last option I would choose as it surely has a risk involved but its better than not filing H1b petition at all.

          • Offcourse, I got to do everything which you can control to get into the lottery.
            Best of Luck !!!

  34. I don’t understand why people are so into how many LCAs are filed.. its all done and dusted guys, nothing will change now.. people are just consoling themselves by seeing less numbers.. you never know until the cat comes out of the bag… spend ur sunday peacefully and hope for the best…

    Fraudsters will be screwed and genuine petitions will prevail.. chill 🙂

    • We are just trying to look into a general trend of the LCAs filed and giving an educated guess based on it. At the end of the day, statistics based on 4-5 years have some meat on it and the numbers do give a picture. If you check out the analysis, you will see a trend without an offset year.

      We have this forum to share our views, analysis, etc.

      You are right about what is done is done and we can’t change anything though.

    • Doing the math helps me relax and makes the waiting less painful. And our analysis is actually pretty good. No more than 130K petitions this year, that’s my bet

      • Franc is adamant on 130k … hahahahahahaha.

        BTW I have not seen any increase in LCAs since yesterday. Although there are still some hours left on the 24-hour cycle when I saw it happening. Let’s see. I’ll put up an update at night.

  35. Should employers/employees who filed H1B applications but didn’t win the lotto file class lawsuit against those H1B cheater/abusers?

    Already reported to USCIS on ALL IT consulting companies that use so-called training program to teach people how to cheat with fake experience on resumes. So, to all cheaters, be prepared for RFE not only about multiple filing, but also more scrutiny on your job application itself. Btw, here’s an example how fake resume can get one into trouble You are welcome!

    • Trump making America great again by shutting the doors for skilled workers they greatly contribute for the American economy and business. what a nonsense.

      • Consulting firms and Indian it firms are paying low salary(less than average salary in a given location) and exploiting their employees. I don’t think USCIS is trying to target genuine applicants.

    • It is over simplification to say 1 LCA = 1 H1b.

      I came across numerous LCA postings with 5, 10, 15 and even 25 H1b applications for 1 LCA.

      In fact, I saw 5 to 6 LCA from Apple requesting 25 new positions for every LCA.

      If you consider this, the number will definitely be way higher !

      • Myvisajobs.com has 232,654 results new employment in 2016, and the actual was 236K. I think the results include the number of petitions within each LCA, and not just the number of LCA’s.

      • Big companies file 1 LCA for multiple positions. Given that USCIS is scrutinizing consultancy firms more, big companies like google , Apple etc may squeeze in more applications.

      • Rezee,

        Big IT companies must be applying multiple applicants to 1 LCA since some years. I agree.

        If you see the DOL data from FY 2014 for June – Oct 1 range, you ‘ll see are the constant trend of 62% – 70 % each year based on the total amount of LCAs filed in that period. They must be filing multiple H1b applicants for single LCA for that period too, right?

        Unless you think that the IT companies suddenly started to put in the number of applicants on single LCA, I don’t see any reason not to follow the trend based on previous 4-5 years data once we have the total LCA count. It’s just very simple math !!

        • It’s normal practice to file for multiple position in one LCA, this has always been the case, that’s why you can’t just tell the number of H1B petitions from the number of LCA. However, it’s also true that many LCAs are not for new petitions, but rather extension/transfer.

          This is why the best we can do is “educated guess”. We are not claiming that we know the number of this year’s petitions beforehand, but we think the LCA numbers can at least indicate the current trend.

          • Do you think there are lots of Desi consultancy and even lot of employers that intentionally don’t file H1b after filing LCA ?

            Can this contribute to difference in H1b vs LCA numbers ?

            Is there a way to identify such employers ?

          • I think there must be a number of LCAs which are not used at all. Or for big companies, they must be applying for n number of new employment but it doesn’t mean that they have to employ and apply for the same number of new employment.

            Plus, I can tell you one more thing, there was a start-up IT company (not the consultancies ) who were looking for some programmers and IT database ppl last year around. They ask me whether I know someone since we have mutual friends and contact. I asked them how they are going to apply for them since it was 1st week of March. They told me that they will see them for a week and then they will apply for them. They said THEY HAVE LCA DONE ALREADY FOR 5 PEOPLE. It is that easy ! I am sure that the consultancies must have been doing LCAs beforehand without being actually having the people for it. In the current turmoil, there must people shying away from getting tangled with these consultancies!

  36. top 50 companies from myvisajobs last year filed 178K LCA approx. this year count 113K approx.
    I entered each coampany name in Icert and search count. that how sum came to 113K

    • NiMo,
      Like you I was also looking into myvisajobs.com but as pointed by other, they have not updated the system with many LCAs missing. For eg, HCL AMERICA. So try to deduce a conclusion based on DOL data.

  37. Hi all,
    why adv searchnot giving proper LCA count today??
    it seems now FY19 is apearing in dropdown, i selected FY18 only.

    Thanks in advance.

  38. Guys, I put an analysis on the second page but i am reposting it to get your views and critique on it to get a more refined view:

    Just like Sam and judging by other comments and looking at LCAs for new H1bs done by big companies i increased my search range from June (6th Month) to Sept 30 (9th Month)

    For FY 2019
    Start Date Range:
    work start date from From:
    work start date to To:
    End Date Range:
    work end date from From:
    work end date To:

    Similarly ,

    Year LCAs # Applications Diff. % of new Applications
    2019 219,620 TBD TBD (62 % – 70 %)
    2018 324,936 199,000 125,936 62 %
    2017 345,874 236,000 109,874 68 %
    2016 330,925 233,000 97,925 70 %
    2015 252,356 172,500 79,856 68 %
    2014 206,331 124,000 82,331 61 %

    If you see, the LCAS values are lying somewhere between FY 2015- 2014, which mean applications may lie somewhere around that too.

    I am gonna add 20,000 LCAs more at the max here for FY 2019
    LCAs = 239,000

    If estimated LCAs are considered
    145 k – 167 k

    If the present LCA numbers are taken into account ( 62 % – 70 % )
    135 k – 156 k

    Percentage of new applications have been decreasing since FY 2016 ( hitting the peak when 233 K disaster happened). I am hopeful there are more transfers and renewals happening this time and this has dropped down to below 60%. The H1b application can be around 140 K in that case

    A very optimistic scenario is that we are taking the present day LCAs and a below 60 % application. It will be around 130 K in that case. Which can be great !!! but looks a bit of a stretch.

    But I will stick with 145 K – 160 K

    Sam has also been saying the same thing which cross validates it.

    • Doing the similar analysis for the Aug 1 to Oct 1 range,

      FY 2018 252,192 199,000 79%
      FY 2017 264,930 236,000 90%
      FY 2016 240,167 233,000 97%
      FY 2015 192,503 172,500 89%
      FY 2016 157,188 124,000 79%

      Giving my point of view from these numbers, if you see the % of new applications is similar for FY 2018 and FY 2016. For FY 2016, the number of applications was low.

      Last year we saw a dip in new applicants yesteryear because of Trump admin clearly stated that they are gonna be stringent and employers complied.

      This year, I don’t see the % of new applicants growing, infact I see it decreasing more because OPT ppl are not getting jobs as they used to be this easy now and I am seeing the Hyderabad applications getting low as well.

      So even if I take 79% and multiply it by estimated LCAs

      = 200,000 * 0.79 = 158 K (hovering around 160 K)

      If I take the current LCAs
      = 180,000 * 0.79 = 145 K

      H1b Estimate = (145 k – 158 K)

      So, whichever sample size and analysis you wanna believe depending on the date ranges, I am not seeing it going over 160K ( that’s the max )
      To have a very optimistic approach, it might come to 130k -140 k. But why to set such expectations??

    • I am not even sure how to guys are able to get LCA numbers. When I try via the link you posted, it always gives me 0 LCA’s. Also this website says there is going to be 180-210k applicants this year

      • That link is just a random guy taking a guess, without doing any proper research or analysis.

        If you look back at older comments, they explain how to get to the LCA’s from legit government websites

        If you do some analysis based on LCA’s, you’ll see that number of petitions will 100% be lower than last year

        The question is whether it will be around 150K (BeStrong’s opinion) or lower than 130K (my opinion)

        • I will be really happy if this is true. I’m in my final attempt . STEM OPT expiring on April end. I literally have no other plan. So I need to get picked up this year at any cost. No1 else has predicted the number to be less than 150k. Mostly people say it will be 160-190k. But I can c that u guys have done an analysis. If the count s really less than 150k, I will be really happy. Any idea when USCIS would announce the count?

  39. Just curious to know, if people with masters from US work mostly as full time employees and consultancy firms like infosys, tcs etc have drastically reduced their number of applications, how come the number of applications can reach 130K-150K in the current year?

    • 150k is pretty low. You did not include the fake Desi consultancy firms that file 3 applications per person.

      And Indian firms haven’t really reduced their filing. They might have reduced by a fraction but it doesn’t make a difference anymore.

      It is these bloody Desi consultancy leeches and their desperate slaves that file for multiples.

      • But with the amount of scrutiny done by USCIS, it will be very difficult for consultancy firms to get approval, even if they get selected in lottery. Genuine people will still be at a disadvantage.

        Do master students from US apply through desi consultancies?

        • Sketchy consultancies all got screwed last year with a bunch of denials.

          Are they really going to try again this year (with even more scrutiny based on Feb22 memo)? Any consultancy application without a legit customer signature will get automatically denied (without RFE)

          They would be wasting money… Much easier to find dumb people (like Gayathri) take their money, and don’t even apply

          • Franc,
            Regarding your LCA renewal theory, you may be right ;
            2009 April 7, 2008 5 Days
            2012 Nov 22nd, 2011 235 Days
            2015 April 7th, 2012 5 Days

            We can see that 2009 and 2015 applications finished in 5 days. That means LCA must have been done for June – Oct 1 dates. So now is their time too. I think the non-new employment percent won’t be dropping this year too.

          • BeStrong,

            Yes! Great point!

            I was also just looking at the dates on the green card waiting lists. The number of renewals will increase for sure. A lot of people are hitting their 9th year anniversary (something that didn’t happen in the previous years), meaning more renewals.

            Even if some companies are less willing to take transfers, I think overall the number of LCA’s other than 1st employment will increase (or at least remain the same).

            If we take 53K from 180K we will end up with 127K (assuming no new LCA’s next week)

            Looking at the bigger sample – 219,620 Minus 125,936 ->94K

            The number of petitions will for sure be more than 94K, but less than 130K (in my opinion)

        • Another thing to notice is that the activity of this website is much lower (~50%) compared to last year, and we almost don’t see any comments from the Indian companies (Infosys, TCS, etc).

          • LCA,

            Last Tuesday I copied the comments on the 2018 page and using some excel tricks I counted the number of comments year to date. The drop was about 60%.

            Also, check this link

            The ranking of this site fell a lot compared with same period last year (check the chart)

            Way less movement on this site —> fewer applications!!

          • Plus these fraud consultancy guys are also getting a lot of hate in the forums since last year now. We pounce on them if they put a post. That is also keeping them away from this platform. lol
            Screw them !!

          • 219K LCAs (current) vs 324K last year for a period of June to Oct 1. Its there to see that applications are lowww !!!

          • BeStrong,

            We should notice that Indian consultancy takes ~70% of all H1Bs. If this low forum activity indicates they are filing significantly fewer petitions, we could have a surprisingly low number for this year.

  40. Based on this link:

    The rejection rate from 09 to 12 was 7.0%
    Assuming that last year USCIS was aiming for the same ration and instead denied 20%, doing the math, they excessively denied 10K minimum last year (accepting only 75K)

    So, to do their job right, USCIS this year shoud:
    1. Aim to accept 95K
    2. Assume a 20% rejection rate
    3. Add about 3.5K for withdrawn or closed petitions
    The “real cap” should be (85K+10K+3.5K)/0.8=123K (too optimistic I know, probably closer to 110K)

    Assuming 180K LCA’s and that transfers, renewals are flat relatively to last year (reasonable considering that active H-1B’s are at an all time high)
    We end up with about 130K petitions

    So, the difference between the “real cap” and petitions is not that large. I’m pretty sure there will be a lottery, but maybe, just maybe, there’s still a change that at least Master’s won’t have lottery… Just maybe…

  41. Certification date:

    Start Date Range:
    work start date from From:
    work start date to To:
    End Date Range:
    work end date from From:
    work end date to To:

    Cases : 180,553

    Its not looking to be tapering off a lot.

    Do you guys think we should consider it done now for Cap H1bs and need to keep on looking for increasing numbers?

    • My theory is this:

      Employers filing for new H1Bs should have stopped, since majority of them have no reason to wait until the last minute to do it.

      Employer filing for transfers though, would be unaffected by this deadline. So I think the LCA increases we may see next week should be mostly transfers.

      That said, this week’s LCA would be “just in time” for new filings, and I think majority of them would be that. So in our calculation we should probably use this 180k number.

    • Just like Sam and judging by other comments and looking at LCAs for new H1bs done by big companies i increased my search range from June (6th Month) to Sept 30 (9th Month)

      For FY 2019
      Start Date Range:
      work start date from From:
      work start date to To:
      End Date Range:
      work end date from From:
      work end date To:

      Similarly ,

      Year LCAs # Applications Diff. % of new Applications
      2019 219,620 TBD TBD (62 % – 70 %)
      2018 324,936 199,000 125,936 62 %
      2017 345,874 236,000 109,874 68 %
      2016 330,925 233,000 97,925 70 %
      2015 252,356 172,500 79,856 68 %
      2014 206,331 124,000 82,331 61 %

      If you see, the LCAS values are lying somewhere between FY 2015- 2014, which mean applications may lie somewhere around that too.

      I am gonna add 20,000 LCAs more at the max here for FY 2019
      LCAs = 239,000

      If estimated LCAs are considered
      145 k – 167 k

      If the present LCA numbers are taken into account ( 62 % – 70 % )
      135 k – 156 k

      Percentage of new applications have been decreasing since FY 2016 ( hitting the peak when 233 K disaster happened). I am hopeful there are more transfers and renewals happening this time and this has dropped down to below 60%. The H1b application can be around 140 K in that case

      A very optimistic scenario is that we are taking the present day LCAs and a below 60 % application. It will be around 130 K in that case. Which can be great !!! but looks a bit of a stretch.

      But I will stick with 145 K – 160 K

      Sam has also been saying the same thing which cross validates it.

      • Really nice analysis, thanks for posting.

        What I see is the following:
        1. The number of transfers was about flat from 2014 to 2015 and then has been increasing constantly (as the pipeline of H-1B from India and China waiting for green cards gets bigger and bigger, the number of renewals of LCA, valid for only 3 years, and transfers has to increase)

        2. Last year there was 126K transfers and renewals

        3. Since last year no change to the green card backlog was made, so we should to assume that the 126K will at least remain the same

        4. With 240K LCA’s for the time period we selected, this would mean 114K petitions

        I know I’m trying to look at the bright side, but still, I don’t see any numbers pointing to more than 130K petitions

        • Also, based on my “real cap” analysis I posted above, with less than 130K H-1B petitions, there is still a chance (albeit really small) that we won’t see a lottery.

          Also, the waiting time for green cards is getting very big and many Indians are waiting for more than 9 years, meaning more LCA’s need to be renewed every 3 years

          • Doing the similar analysis for the Aug 1 to Oct 1 range,

            FY 2018 252,192 199,000 79%
            FY 2017 264,930 236,000 90%
            FY 2016 240,167 233,000 97%
            FY 2015 192,503 172,500 89%
            FY 2016 157,188 124,000 79%

            Giving my point of view from these numbers, if you see the % of new applications is similar for FY 2018 and FY 2016. For FY 2016, the number of applications was low.

            Last year we saw a dip in new applicants yesteryear because of Trump admin clearly stated that they are gonna be stringent and employers complied.

            This year, I don’t see the % of new applicants growing, infact I see it decreasing more because OPT ppl are not getting jobs as they used to be this easy now and I am seeing the Hyderabad applications getting low as well.

            So even if I take 79% and multiply it by estimated LCAs

            = 200,000 * 0.79 = 158 K (hovering around 160 K)

            If I take the current LCAs
            = 180,000 * 0.79 = 145 K

            H1b Estimate = (145 k – 158 K)

            So, whichever sample size and analysis you wanna believe depending on the date ranges, I am not seeing it going over 160K ( that’s the max )
            To have a very optimistic approach, it might come to 130k -140 k. But why to set such expectations?? Lol

          • BeStrong,

            If you say that 200K LCA’s means -> 160K H-1B petitions, you’re saying that transfers and renewals will drop from 53K to 40K.

            While I agree that many companies are less willing to take H-1B transfers, the number of renewals will increase for sure (as more H-1B’s wait for longer for green cards). Many Indians are on the waiting list since 2008, and every 3 years they need a new LCA

            If next week the LCA’s don’t go up and stay at 180K, we should see no more than 130K new petitions

          • Franc, what about multiple applications in single LCA ?

            You seem to be confident that 1 LCA = 1 H1B. But there are LCAs with literally 10, 25 H1b requests there. Do you understand a simple 130k * 2 = ,260000 applications ?

      • Personally speaking, I would like to go with the findings from June 1 – Oct 1 date range analysis because the sample size is pretty big based on Sam’s previous analysis of the Big It companies putting the LCAs prior to Sept 1 ( June to Aug), it will cover those applications as well. Whether they applied prior to Sept 1 or after that this year, it is getting covered.


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