Washington, D.C.– U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced today that it has received 45,900 H-1B petitions that will count against the Congressionally-mandated cap for fiscal year 2005 (October 1, 2004 through September 30, 2005). The limit in fiscal year 2005 is 65,000.
Established by the Immigration Act of 1990, the H-1B visa category allows U.S. employers to augment the existing labor force with highly skilled temporary workers. H-1B workers are admitted to the United States for an initial period of three years, which may be extended for an additional three years. Typical H-1B occupations include architects, engineers, computer programmers, accountants, doctors and college professors.
The Congressionally-mandated cap limits the number of requests for initial employment that USCIS may approve each year. Petitions seeking extensions or modifications to current H-1B employment are not counted against the cap. In addition, persons working for employers statutorily exempt from the cap (such as institutions of higher education, or nonprofit research organizations) are not counted against the cap.