As of April 4, 2012, USCIS has received 22,500 H-1B non-immigrant visa petitions needed to meet the regular and master’s degree caps, according to information released by the agency on H-1B non-immigrant visa petitions for Fiscal Year 2013. Approximately one-third of the petitions received are counted toward the 20,000 master’s degree cap. The H-1B regular cap is 65,000. The rate of petitions so far represents a 50% increase over FY2012, when the cap was not reached until November 21, 2012. If this pace continues, it is unlikely that H-1Bs will be available beyond this summer.Employers should file any needed H-1Bs as early as possible.

Jackson Lewis will continue to provide updates on the cap numbers as they become available.