The USCIS announced that as of November 20, 2009, approximately 56,900 H-1B cap-subject petitions had been filed. USCIS has approved sufficient H-1B petitions for aliens with advanced degrees to meet the exemption of 20,000 from the fiscal year 2010 cap. Any H-1B petitions filed on behalf of an alien with an advanced degree will now count toward the general H-1B cap of 65,000. USCIS will continue to accept both cap-subject petitions and advanced degree petitions until a sufficient number of H-1B petitions have been received to reach the statutory limits, recognizing that some of these petitions may be denied, revoked, or withdrawn.

Last week, the USCIS used approximately 1300 H-1Bs. Assuming the agency stops accepting applications once they hit 58,200 (65,000 less 6,800 reserved for H-1B1 program), the cap will be open for about one more week. Those needing an H-1B visa should file immediately. If the quota is reached, H-1B visas will be unavailable until October of 2010.