Tuesday, December 22, 2009

H-1B cap reached for Fiscal Year 2010

As noted in this link:
As of December 21, 2009, USCIS has 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.

The Department of State has issued a press release with details of a proposed fee increase.  The fees would apply to all nonimmigrant visa applications and border crossing cards. 

Under the proposed rule, applicants for all visas that are not petition-based, including B1/B2 tourist and business visitor visas and all student and exchange-visitor visas, would pay a fee of $140. Applicants for petition-based visas would pay an application fee of $150. These categories include:
  •  H visa for temporary workers and trainees
  •  L visa for intracompany transferees
  •  O visa for aliens with extraordinary ability
  •  P visa for athletes, artists and entertainers
  •  Q visa for international cultural exchange visitors
  •  R visa for religious occupations
The application fee for K visas for fiancĂ©(e)s of U.S. citizens would be $350.  The fee for E visas for treaty-traders and treaty-investors would be $390. 

The Department will not begin collecting the new proposed fees until it considers public comments and publishes a final rule.  In order to view the proposed rule and to submit comments, please go to www.regulations.gov.