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What is the H-1B Cap-exempt? How is it Applied? How Does it Work?

H1B lawyer

What is the H-1B Cap-exempt? How is it Applied? How Does it Work?

What is a Cap-Exempt H-1B?

H1B cap-exemptions are for nonprofit that are affiliated with an institution of higher education. The H1B is a nonimmigrant visa that is given to foreign workers with special occupations. The H1B visa cap dedicated 65,000 petitions to foreign workers with the required skills. An additional 20,000 petitions are given to individuals who have advanced degrees at a masters level. A cap-exempt category includes:

  • Higher education institution
  • Non-profit organization associated with a higher education institution
  • Non-profit research or government organization

These petitions are filed for cap-exempt candidates and those that are filed by cap-exempt employers.

If in the past an individual was under H1B status and is currently outside the Unites States, he or she can qualify to have an employer file a cap-exempt petition for them if the individual proves that he or she was in the country for the past 6 years and did not exceed the maximum duration of their stay.

Benefits of Cap-Exempt Filing

Having a cap-exempt filed, it can give you your first ever H-1B visa. And once you obtain H-1B visa, and individual can transfer to a different cap-exempt employer. For instance, an H-1B cap-exempt employer may help in the finance department, the IT department, hospital, and any medical facility. H-1B cap-exempt processing times takes anywhere from 3-4 months while going for premium processing can shorten your petition’s processing time to 15 days.

Who are H-1B Cap Exempt Candidates?

  • If you already received a H-1B cap exemption than the USCIS will not grant you a cap.
  • If you are under the H-1B status and is currently outside the United States, an employer may file a cap-exempt petition but needs to prove that you were in the United States for 6 years and did not exceed the limit of your stay.

Contributed by Svetlana Prizant, an Award Winning New York Immigration Lawyer:

Call or Visit Prizant Law Today At:
Prizant Law
118-21 Queens Blvd Suite 507
Forest Hills, NY 11375


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