H-1B Professional Specialty Worker Cap Update
October 1 marked the beginning of the new fiscal year, visas are now
immediately available for new H-1B cap-subject petitions. As of October
28th, USCIS reports that 49,200 new H-1B cap-subject petitions were
receipted and another 20,000 petitions for foreign nationals with
advanced degrees for FY2012. There are 85,000 new H-1B visas available
annually, of which 20,000 are designated for advanced degree holders.
For FY2011, H-1B visas became unavailable as of January 26, 2011.
Tough Penalties Levied Against School District in Maryland for H-1B Violations Become Final
Department of Labor Administrative Law Judge approved a settlement
agreement with Maryland's Prince George's County School District
(PGCSD), located in the Washington, D.C. metro area, to pay sizeable
fines for major violations of the H-1B program, including failure to pay
wages and to maintain documentation as required. Under the agreement,
PGSCD is barred from hiring any new foreign workers for two years and
must pay a civil penalty of more than $100,000 for violating the H-1B
program and over $4 million in back wages to more than 1,000 teachers.
Over the last several years, government agencies involved with the
H-1B program have stepped up their enforcement and auditing efforts.
Employers and their human resource personnel are wise to make sure their
public access files and other records relating to their H-1B employees
are up to date and in good order.