The recent economic downturn greatly has impacted H-1 filings. As I have explained in the past, these lower numbers provide compelling evidence against the argument that internationally-trained workers are being used to displace American workers and lower US workers salaries. That argument just doesn’t jibe with what is actually happening.
In the first five days of this H-1B season in April, the USCIS says that it received 42,000 H-1B petitions. The total is now about 45,000. This tiny increase in number is attributed to two factors: (i) the tougher measures being employed by both USCIS and the DOS; and (ii) the current economic condition in the US.
(Note- Fiscal Year runs from October 1 of the prior year until September 30 of the next year. You may file for an H-1B 6 months in advance of the October 1 start of the fiscal year. In other words, the FY2010 H-1B “season” began on April 1, 2009).
FY 2009: Immediate (First week of April 2008)
FY 2008: Immediate (First week of April 2007)
FY 2007: April 1, 2006 - May 26, 2006
FY 2006: April 1, 2005 - August 12, 2005
FY 2005: April 1, 2004 - October 1, 2004
FY 2004: April 1, 2003 - Feb 17, 2004
FY 2003: Not reached (Cap was 195,000)
FY 2002: Not reached (Cap was 195,000)
FY 2001: Not reached (cap was 195,000)