U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will start accepting H-1B petitions subject to the Fiscal Year (FY) 2013 cap on Monday, April 2nd, 2012. The numerical limit cap for H-1B petitions for the fiscal year is 65,000. Of the 65,000 yearly numbers, 6,800 are allocated for nationals of Singapore and Chile, leaving only approximately 58,200 numbers per fiscal year. The first 20,000 H-1B petitions filed on behalf of individuals with U.S. Master’s Degrees or higher are exempt from the H-1B cap.
The employment start date for the H-1B petitions will be October 1, 2012. Although the H-1B cap was not reached until November 22nd, 2011 for the FY 2012 filings, it is expected that the H-1B cap will run out much faster the FY 2013 filings because of the improving economy. USCIS is expecting to receive higher number of H-1B filings on the first day for FY 2013 filings than each of the past 2 years.