We all know the early bird gets the worm. But some employers will be disappointed this year when they’re not selected by the United States Citizens and Immigration Services (USCIS) in its random lottery system. The USCIS will open its five day window and accept filings of H-1B visa petitions at the end of the first quarter. Only employers seeking workers in a position that normally requires a bachelor’s degree or higher in a related field of study may apply for this specialty occupation visa. Last year, the USCIS received over 233,000 petitions, but was limited to the statutory cap of 65,000 with an additional 20,000 reserved for applicants under the advance degree exception. The number of petitions received continues to grow, but the number of visas available does not. Since it’s no longer first come, first serve, companies can only hope they’re lucky enough to get selected.