United States Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) recently announced that as of October 28, 2011, it had received 49,200 H-1B cap-subject petitions to meet the regular H-1B cap of 65,000 visas for Fiscal Year 2012. USCIS has already received a sufficient number of H-1B cap-subject petitions to meet the H-1B Master's cap of 20,000 visas for Fiscal Year 2012. Please note that up to 6,800 H-1B visas may be set aside from the regular cap each fiscal year for the government's H-1B1 program benefitting citizens of Chile and Singapore.

Over the last two months, USCIS has received approximately 2,000 to 3,000 H-1B cap-subject petitions each week. If this pace continues, we expect that the H-1B cap will be exhausted by the end of the year. Therefore, any companies wishing to secure H-1B status for their employees who are subject to the H-1B cap should act now. Those wishing to file under the Fiscal Year 2013 H-1B cap must wait until April 1, 2012 to submit their H-1B petitions for an effective date of October 1, 2012.