The effective date for newly processed H-1B applications is October 1, 2007. As a result of over 130,000 applications the USCIS will use a random selection process for all H-1B filing received by April 2, 2007 and April 3, 2007 because the number of applicants greatly exceeded the numerical limitation. For applications received on or after Wednesday, April 4, 2007, the USCIS will reject and return the applications together with the filing fees as well as the applications not randomly selected. Applicants will have to wait under April 1, 2008 to file for new H-1Bâ€™s which would become available on October 1, 2008.
EXEMPTIONS FROM THE H-1B CAP
The first 20,000 H-1B petitions filed for applicants with U.S. earned Masterâ€™s degrees or higher are exempt from the fiscal year cap of H-1B visas. 20,000 visas are available for these master degree holders. It is not yet known when these numbers will be exhausted but it appears that this category for the H-1B program is still available.
CURRENT H-1B HOLDERS
Petitions applied for current H-1B holders are not counted towards the H-1B numerical limitation. For these candidates, the H-1B category remains open without limitation to
a) extend the time for a current H-1B holder;
b) change the employer of a current H-1B holder for the terms of employment;
c) allow a current H-1B holder to work concurrently in a second H-1B position.
H-1B APPLICANTS WITH HIGHER EDUCATION INSTITUTES OR NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATIONS, NON-PROFIT RESEARCH ORGANIZATIONS, OR GOVERNMENTAL RESEARCH ORGANIZATIONS
H-1B petitioners otherwise eligible, are not subject to the numerical limitation if
the petitioning employer is an institution of higher education or related or affiliated non-profit entity, a non-profit research organization or a governmental research organization. These applications are exempt from the numerical limitation and these applications will continue to be processed.
H-2B NUMERICAL LIMITATION IS FILLED FOR THE SECOND HALF OF FISCAL YEAR 2007
March 16, 2007 was the final receipt date for new H-2B workers that would have begun on October 1, 2007. Petitions for workers who are currently in H-2B status and returning H-2B workers are not counted towards the numerical limitation and hence may renew their authorized stay. To qualify the workers must have had an approved H-2B visa between October 1, 2003 and September 30, 2006.
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