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Focus on Regulation

Annual Quota of H-1B Visas Reached

USCIS has announced that, as of 11 June 2012, the agency has received enough petitions for H-1B visas that are subject to the annual quota for Fiscal Year 2013 (covering the Oct. 1, 2012–Sept. 30, 2013 period).  The quota was met much earlier than in the last two years.  This will impact all U.S. employers who are interested in hiring foreign nationals in specialty occupations eligible for H-1B visas, when such persons are subject to the annual quota (for example, existing employees currently holding H-1B status and seeking an extension with the same employer are not subject to the quota).  Employers should assess other visa options for new hires or existing employees who are in a different visa status and thus may be affected by the H-1B quota.  For more information, please see Hogan Lovells Immigration Alert.