U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) continues to accept H-1B nonimmigrant petitions subject to the fiscal year (FY) 2011 cap.

As of September 3, 2010, USCIS had received approximately 36,600 H-1B petitions counting toward the 65,000 cap and the Service had received approximately 13,400 petitions counting toward the 20,000 cap for individuals with advanced degrees from U.S. institutions. In 2009, H-1B numbers remained available until December 22, 2009.

When USCIS receives the necessary number of petitions to meet the cap, it will issue a public update that the FY 2011 H-1B cap has been met as of a certain date (the “final receipt date”). The final receipt date will be based on the date USCIS physically receives the petition, not the date that the petition has been postmarked. The date USCIS informs the public that the cap has been reached may differ from the actual final receipt date.

USCIS said it may randomly select the number of petitions required to reach the numerical limit from the petitions received on the final receipt date. USCIS will reject cap-subject petitions that are not selected, as well as those received after the final receipt date.

Petitions filed by employers who are exempt from the cap or petitions filed on behalf of current H-1B workers who have previously been counted against the cap within the past six years will not be subject to the congressionally mandated H-1B cap.