H-1B cap-subject registration season for FY2023 is open and runs through noon Eastern Time on March 18th. During this time period, petitioners can register beneficiaries electronically through the myUSCIS portal for $10/registration. The number of registrations submitted is virtually guaranteed to exceed the allotted annual H-1B visas available, in which case there will be a randomized lottery to select registrations to file complete petitions.
20,000 masters cap petitions will be selected first, then those who meet master’s cap requirements not selected will have a second chance to be selected for the remaining 65,000 visas in the regular cap lottery. That means if the beneficiary qualifies for the master’s cap, they have a leg up in being selected.
Who qualifies for the master’s cap?
Master’s cap educational requirements are much stricter than for the regular cap. The beneficiary hold a master’s degree or higher from a US academic institution. The institution must be nonprofit or public – for-profit colleges and universities do not count. The institution must be accredited or have pre-accreditation status. That means credential evaluation strategies that work for regular cap petitions do not work to meet master’s cap eligibility requirements.
Beneficiaries in the process of completing a master’s degree may still be eligible for the master’s cap. While the complete petition cannot be filed until the degree has been attained, those selected will have 90 days to file starting April 1, 2022. That means so long as the beneficiary completes the advanced degree program by the end of June they can still register under the master’s cap.
This is the same for beneficiaries who will complete their bachelor’s degree program before the end of June 2022 in terms of the regular H-1B cap.
Education issues are perennial RFE triggers when it comes to cap-subject H-1B petitions. The good news is that education issues are relatively simple to prevent. At CCI TheDegreePeople.com we work with difficult education cases every year. We know the red flags and we know how to fix them in the initial petition before they become adjudication issues.
For a free review of your case visit www.ccifree.com. We will respond in 4 hours or less.
Sheila Danzig is the director of CCI TheDegreePeople.com. Sheila specializes in overturning RFEs and Denials for work visas.