U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced today that the FY 2016 H-1B cap has been reached. All petitions submitted between April 1st and 7th of 2015 will be placed in a lottery for random selection.
USCIS issued an announcement that it will begin accepting H-1B petitions for the fiscal year 2016 on April 1, 2015.
Members of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) recently noted at a USCIS headquarters meeting that the Q & A on Post-Completion Optional Practical Training and F-1 Status for Eligible Students under the H-1B Cap-Gap Regulations available on the USCIS website states that a student granted a cap-gap extension who elects to travel outside the United States during the cap-gap extension period, will not be able to return in F-1 status. However, AILA members noted that this statement conflicts with the regulations on this subject, which indicate that an F-1 student who is the Beneficiary of an H-1B petition filed for change of status and a valid post-completion OPT EAD may travel and return to the U.S. after a temporary absence and resume OPT employment if the student has a valid F-1 visa stamp, a properly endorsed I-20, and an EAD card which has been automatically extended under 8 CFR §214.2(f)(5)(vi)(A), provided the student is otherwise admissible.