The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced today that it received sufficient petitions to exhaust the FY2012 H-1B cap as of Tuesday, November 22nd. Cases properly filed and received before Tuesday the 22nd will be accepted and processed to adjudication. Cases received on Tuesday will be subjected to a computer-generated random selection process. Cases not selected in the lottery will be rejected and filing fees returned. No announcement has been made yet on how many petitions will be subjected to the random selection, nor how many numbers are available for those cases.

It should benoted that even if postmarked on or before Tuesday the 22nd, cases not physically received by USCIS by that date will be rejected and filing fees returned.

The FY2013 H-1B cap will open on April 1, 2012. Cases approved for FY2013 will not become effective until October 1, 2012, which is when the new fiscal year begins. Employers wishing to employ individuals who missed the FY2012 cap will need to ensure continued U.S. work authorization through at least September 30, 2012, to keep them on payroll until an H-1B can be obtained.

There are a number of options available to those who missed the H-1B cap. For specific guidance, please contact Graham Adair: