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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. Hi, I am from CTS Chennai. I have received REF and just 1 document asked from USCIS and that is “Education Evaluation”. Any idea how tough or easy to get thru from this kind of RFE?

    • Venkat,
      I am also from CTS and got RFE .
      When did you get RFE? From Where you got to know about the document?
      I got RFE on 18th Jan and still waiting for update from Mobility Team.
      Your response will help me to get picture clear.

    • It’s not just one document.. The office should be convinced that you have the academic background to perform the job.. This is complex when you are from non-CS computers background..

      You might have to show that you have computer subjects and you did some certification and received some on the job training etc.. This is common in US and a professional immigration attorney would handle at ease..

      However, the officer handling the case should be convinced towards the end.. Hope you receive approval. Unlike last year.. 85% of the cases gets approval.. Cognizant doesn’t share full RFE.. GM team asked you for educational evaluation.. What you have received is SO – Specialty Occupation.. I am 100% sure you received SO.. Blog it.

      Also make sure GM team has gone through all the RFE and shared you everything.. Nowadays cognizant has many rejections besides the GM team is also not handling RFE efficiently .. They beat around the bush instead of addressing all the aspects of RFE..

      This is my personal view point.. hope this helps you.. Wish you good luck!!!

      • I’m from CTS I too got RFE on Jan 25.. Yet to get the details on RFE. But I guess they are requesting only Educational documents from us and our supervisors will be intimated separately to provide SOW, client letter and MSA.

  2. Indian MNC
    10+ Years Experience
    Computer Systems Analyst
    Lottery Acknowledge Date: 10th May 2018, WAC1816650***
    Employer Notified on: 24th May 2018
    REF: 18th Jan 2019
    REF details updated on my Uscis and egiv site
    Employed waiting for RFE details
    Fingers Crossed

  3. Hi
    I am currently on Valid L1visa. Today I got email saying my H1b petition approved. My question is can my wife travel to USA using valid L2 visa? I had booked her return flight on 25th Jan from Bengalore.

    Thank you

    • Sorry to hear. Wishing you to get approval soon. May i know the series WAC18159**? Mine is WAC18159501**. I am still waiting for an update? Where do you find RFE details?

    • Sorry to hear. Wishing you to get approval soon. May i know the series WAC18159**? Mine is WAC18159501**. I am still waiting for an update? Where do you find RFE details?

  4. Hi,

    My h1b amendment got denied recently after rfe but my i-94 is still valid till Aug 2019. My current project is going to end soon in a month .What are my options now?

    1. Can I work for other contract job with same employer?

    2. Do h1b transfer to another employer?

    What option is most recommended and safe?

    • If amendment is denied, you are still eligible to work for a client for which H1B was originally approved for.
      1. If the new job is not in the area for which LCA was originally filed for, then you may need to file a new amendment.
      2. You can transfer. But remember that it will be in normal processing and if it is rejected then you may be out of status.

      Think wisely and take a good decision. Good luck!

      • Hello Ram,

        I need your feedback or suggestions regarding filling fresh H1B with www.K7inc.com
        K7 Staffing & Solutions Inc. for the year 2019.

  5. I see my petition is approved in DHS portal on jan 11, 2019! My employer or immigration attorney hasn’t got the official approval notice.

    I know usually it gonna take 1-2 weeks to receive hard copy of approval notice. Is there any delay in mailing too? Anyone who has case status as “Approved” on jan 11 received hard copy?

  6. Status changed to RFE on 01/17. Yet to know what are all documents/details requested by USCIS.
    Masters in Computer science
    Received date May 4, 2018.
    Wage level 1.
    Applied with client letter & SOW.

    • Nowadays if the wage level is 1(entry level salary), USCIS doesn’t consider the job as specialty occupation. You may have to prove that your job is specialty occupation. All nowadays USCIS is only approving H1b for the duration of the project and not for the entire 3 years.

      • This is not entirely true,

        My H1b approved — Advance Degree
        Wage level 1, SOC15-1141, had RFE on Speciality Occupation, Emp Empr Rel and Right of control.

        Don’t loose hope, Good Luck!!

  7. Hi All,

    My employer filed for my H1b this year . I got through the lottery and waiting for approval. I am very new to H1b and trying to learn and understand how its works.
    Now, My LCA is filed for June 2020. I came to know that I will get approval(If I get one) till June 2020 and after that I had file new H1b but not extension. I didnt understood it that I should come back to India and then File for new one, wait for lottery and approval..Is that so or there are any other options for me. please through some light on this as Iam very confused and frustated. Please!!!.

    • Once your H1B is approved, you can get stamping and travel to USA. While entering USA, you will be issued i94, which determines how long you can legally stay in USA. i94 expiry date is usually the visa expiry date or visa expiry date plus 20 days. About three to four months before your visa/i94 expiry, your company will file for extension(Cap exempt H1B). Once approved, you will get a new i94 extending your stay. So you can legally stay once your extension is approved. Your visa stamping is only required to enter the country. After that its i94 which determines whether you are present legally or not. So after visa expiry, its enough if you get stamping when you travel out of the country. Once Visa is approved in lottery, you need not undergo visa lottery process again as your H1B is extendable upto 6 years.

  8. My h1 extension was filed with wrong pay rate on LCA (L2 to L4 wage), i’m in the 240 day grace period right now, can anything be done ? Can anyone advise on this?

  9. Whether SOW should contain the beneficiary name. Is it mandatory. My projects SOW doesn’t have this info but client invite letter has the information. Anyone aware of about this. Please suggest.

  10. I am still waiting on my case as many of the cases were progressed in the series WAC159501**. Does this delay make any visibility for the approval?

  11. Hi,

    I got my H1 approved in 2017 valid until 2020 through EVC Model, Now for the same client i have changed location and applied for H1 Amendment which is in RFE now. Recently same Client asked me for Full time.

    1)Can i initiate H1 Transfer when H1 Amendment for location change is in processing?
    2) i told my Client that i would move only when H1 transfer is approved. is this ok?
    3) Also, should i notify my employer only after H1 transfer is completed?

    Please answer

    Thanks in advance

    • 1. Yes
      2. Yes.
      3. Yes. That is a safe option else the current employer may withdraw the current application. In that case you may able to work with receipt number but it is better to get approval and move on.

      –Good luck and all the best.

  12. H1B Extension Filed (EVC Model)
    Filed on 7th January and got approved 11th January.

    Wage level 4
    US Master’s and PhD in Computer science.

  13. Hi,

    I am travelling next week to US with H1B. I want to know what are all the documents required to get SSN number. I searched online & got confusion. Some say I94 form is required. Where I can get that?

    Please help me with list of documents to carry. Thanks in advance.

    • For SSN please carry copy of passport, visa & I-94 copy. If possible carry the offer letter(deputation) for the US transfer. I-94 will be available in https://i94.cbp.dhs.gov/I94/#/home under ‘Get Most Recent I-94’. Data will be available here after your successful port of entry.

  14. Hi,

    Need your input on the below. Its an Amendment application. The application was submitted on 30th March, and until yesterday no action was taken. Today I got an alert that an action was taken on my case as below.


    Your Case Status: Initial Review

    On January 15, 2019, we transferred your Form I129, PETITION FOR A NONIMMIGRANT WORKER, Receipt Number WAC1813xxxxxx, to another USCIS office. That office now has jurisdiction over your case. We sent you a notice that explains why we moved your case. Please follow the instructions in the notice. If you do not receive your notice by February 14, 2019, please go to www.uscis.gov/e-request to request a copy of the notice. If you move, go to www.uscis.gov/addresschange to give us your new mailing address.

    During this step, USCIS initiates the background checks of the applicant/petitioner and identifies issues that may need to be addressed either during an interview or by asking the applicant/petitioner to submit additional information or documentation. USCIS reviews the applicant’s/petitioner’s criminal history, determines if there are national security concerns that need to be addressed, and reviews the application/petition for fraud indicators. If you have filed an I-485, I-589, I-751, N-400, I-90, I-821, I-131 or I-765, you can expect to receive an appointment notice to appear at an Application Support Center to have your fingerprints and/or photographs taken. The timing of your appointment is determined by the number of applicants ahead of you that also need a biometric appointment. …………..

    Can someone pls advise what this means?

  15. Hi folks,

    received RFE. query is regarding the SOW and the client letter.
    both my SOW and client letter mentions my organisation’s current role (Technology Lead). in LCA SOC Job title is mentioned as Computer System Analyst. whether Computer System Analyst should be mentioned in SOW and Client letter. any idea. please help

  16. I just saw RFE for my case in mydhs account. I am from HCL. receipt date 12-May-2018, RFE date 14-Jan-2019. Not sure what they have asked. need to wait to get all information. WAC181685xxxx

  17. Finally got the damn H1B approval today. It has been a long long wait, I know some of you might still be waiting. I hope you guys get the news soon.
    Below is the timeline for my application. hope it helps
    – April 2018 : application submitted (for Adv degree)
    – June : I-797C notice
    – Wait
    – Wait
    – Oct : RFE (Employer-employee relation and additional documents from my employer. My position is full-time with a medium sized gaming company)
    – December 5th 2018: Replied for RFE
    – Jan 14th 2019 – Approval notice recieved

  18. Hi All,

    Please help me with my question.
    I have H1B with employer A.
    Employer A has a sub-contract with employer B.
    Employer B has a contract with client C.

    Who will be the client for A while filing H1B amendment B or C?

    Thanks in advance.

  19. Direct Approval without RFE – WAC1816150***
    Notice Date: 05-May-2018
    Approval Date: 11-Jan-2019

    ~9yrs of Exp in IT, Data Scientist!! Works for a very small organization and wage level would be 2 or 3 i guess!!

    Wish everyone all the Best and hope you all get approvals very soon!!

  20. I just saw RFE for my case in mydhs account. I am from HCL. receipt date 11-May-2018, RFE date 03-Jan-2019. Not sure what they have asked. need to wait to get all information. :(. Not sure if it again would take 6-8 months time. Can they also reject as the application too?

  21. Hi Friends,

    I would like to confirm whether application can be transferred to Another employer after receiving the RFE?This is a first time H1B application.The current employer may not be able to provide the documents in responding to RFE.
    Thanks in advance.

    • Unfortunately no. It has to be approved at least once to initiate transfer. Mere picking of application in lottery doesn’t mean the H1B is approved. Please convince your employer to reply for RFE and get it approved. Then transfer can be initiated.

  22. Hi All,
    I need to get important clarification.Got RFE and my employer is struggling to provide the required documents requested by USCIS.Infact I recently came to know that they are not capable to provide all the documents.Now they said they are going to move out of the process.I need to know how my application will be considered.Withdrawn or Rejected?
    Will this have an impact on my next year new application if I apply for h1b in 2019?
    Please advise me.

    • If your employer doesn’t respond within the given time frame, your application will be rejected. When you apply for H1b in 2019, you have to mention about rejection.

    • no it doesn’t have any impact on you for next year application. It need not be mentioned anywhere. H1B rejection affects the employer more. Only visa interview rejection, attributes to you and that needs to be mentioned. Not petition rejection.

  23. I checked on DHS and it is showing approved will mail approval notice but USCIS status is still received.company Infy. Wac18165*****

    • Don’t worry. I am also in same series. Mydhs showing “approved on Dec 14” and egov “received”. Received the approval notice on Jan 2 from attorney.

  24. Hi Friends,


    Has anyone from your company got approval yet?

    I am from one of the above company and in my circle of 9 known h1 lottery selected case, none has received any info since Lottery selected news.

    Thanks in advance

  25. My petition got approved today. Yet to know anything more on this. Company confirmed. My lottery select intimation date was on 1st June 2018.

  26. Hello, Anybody with WAC1816*** series still have their status as “Case received” as on today with May-05th receipt date? Non-AD with 12 years IT exp in Fortune 100 companies and applying from India. Can admin help me understand how long it might take to get the approval or how long it might take to finish all H1b 20198-19 approvals?

  27. Hello Kumar,

    My h1b petition was approved till 1/15 and i94 is expiring on 1/25. My attorney waited till the last moment and sent the extension application today(1/8). I’m assuming the time to receive an acknowledgment receipt is 2-3 weeks, what are my options if I don’t get the receipt before my i-94 expires, is it safe to continue work with a FedEx delivery receipt?

    Thank you for your help!

    • It is not safe to work with fedex number. It is better to have receipt number. Please talk to your Attorney and check what needs to be done. If you don’t receive receipt number on time, its safe to travel out of the country.

  28. Hi Saurab/Kumar,

    My case was approved on Nov-2017 and got approval for 3 years(till -2020 end). My sposored company ABC and Client XYZ doesn’t have much projects related to my skill(RPA& AI) during that time . Now we have and booked visa appointment next month.

    Please provide your suggestions for the below questions.

    1) What would be the best answer if VO asked about delay(1Yr 3M) for coming interview?

    2) i too have personal reason to fulfill the gap and can i say ?

    3) It will be any impact for visa approval ?

    4) They revised offer letter 80K will it be fine ?

    5) If something goes wrong , am I eligible for H1b CAP exempte with valid approved case / its required stamping as well for CAP exemption.

    Kindly provide your valuable tips and suggestions.

    • 1 & 2. Yes you can say some personal reason and cover it
      3. If you give an convincing answer, it should not have any impact.
      4. Does this salary match the LCA? Your salary in offer letter should match LCA. If it differs, there might be some trouble.
      5. Yes you are eligible and it requires stamping again

      Good luck!Let us know of the outcome.

      • Its’ been Approved and Stamping done successfully.

        Another few questions.

        1) Actually LCA was filled NEWYORK but should i go and work TAMPA, amendment is required ?

        2) After travelling with how many days we can do H1B Trasfer ?

  29. Hi friends! Well yesterday I felt that it was the week of approvals… not for me it seams haha ??‍♀️! My employer told me that they received a RFE for My case last week in response to the inquiery that they did back in november. I am yet to receive the detail on what they asking, status online hasn’t changed yet. Feeling a little discouraged I have to say because it means more waiting and it means a potential denial as my case seams to not be strong enough … but it also means that I still have a chance and that they didn’t lost My application after all haha ! I will keep you posted ! Fingers crossed for your direct approvals !! Notice date : 5th of may WAC181615 Chemist – Bachelor degree (out of US)

  30. @Admin kUmar- if you are aware any such scenario, please reply. I got my H1 for 3mnths and now applied extension in Premium and Today I recieved request for Initial Evidence.. Bit worried about current situation.. Anyone in Similar situation.. Please do Replyy

  31. I applied for H1B extension, and today I recieved , Request for initial Evidence.. What does This mean? Anyone in similar situation. please do Reply

  32. Hello Admin,

    My STEM expires in two weeks and I still have not received any update on my RFE response from USCIS. its been like 52 days today. From my knowledge I cannot work once my STEM expires, but can I still stay in USA without violating any rules. Please advice.

  33. Even I didn’t receive last week. Usually I get every alternate Tuesdays with last action date as 26th June. But didn’t get it on 25th dec.

  34. Last week, Anyone received auto generated email stating “No action taken for your case” ? I used to get it every two weeks. I didnt receive it in the last week.

    • Received date 04-12-2018 in Egov USCIS and Received date 03-05-2018 in DHS site status” Case Received” and no updates till date, anyone is the same boat?

  35. I got RFE about specialty occupation on 8-July-2018. We submitted the response on 30-September-2018. t’s more than 95 days any idea how long does it takes, for USCIS to respond my RFE response. Any idea?


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