The H-1B nonimmigrant visa category, which includes a total of 85,000 "slots" per government fiscal year, has reached its limit for FY2010 (October 1, 2009 to September 30, 2010). According to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS),

As of December 21, 2009, USCIS had received sufficient petitions to reach the statutory cap for FY2010. USCIS has also received more than 20,000 H-1B petitions on behalf of persons exempt from the cap under the advanced degree exemption. USCIS will reject cap-subject petitions for new H-1B specialty occupation workers seeking an employment start date in FY2010 that are received after December 21, 2009. USCIS will apply a computer-generated random selection process to all petitions that are subject to the cap and were received on December 21, 2009.

Employers will next be eligible to file new (cap-subject) H-1B petitions on April 1, 2010, the first day that FY2011 H-1B cases may be submitted to USCIS. H-1B petitions filed for FY2011, if approved, would be effective October 1, 2011.